Patricia Ann Ellena-Conway (nee Crooks) of Charlottesville, VA, passed away on December 18,
2020, at her residence. She was preceded in death by her parents, Raymond and Sarah Crooks, her
sisters, Catherine Shields-Birchall, Jane Starke and Mary Bond, and her beloved labradoodle, Ginger.
Pat was born on November 15, 1930, in Chicago, Illinois, where she lived until age 23.After high
school, Pat was employed by Liberty Mutual Insurance Company where she met her first husband,
Robert Francis Ellena. After Pat was employed for a brief time as a flight attendant, she and Bob were
married in 1953. During the next seven years they had four children: Jeff, Greg, Bob, and Beth. The
family lived in Chicago, South Bend, Detroit and Omaha. Pat and Bob were loving and devoted parents
and created an environment that allowed their children to flourish. In 1961, the family moved to
Waldwick, NJ, and then to Medfield, MA, in 1965. Bob passed away unexpectedly in 1973, and Pat
worked hard to care for four teenagers.
In 1982, Pat married Rae Conway, and they resided in West Hartford, CT, until Rae’s death in
1987. Pat was employed by Capital Community College in Hartford until retirement in 1997. She then
moved to Charlottesville, VA, to be near family. Holy Comforter was her parish home for many years. In
her retirement, she enjoyed traveling, reading, exercising and walking her beloved Ginger on the
downtown mall. She brought many stories and memories to family Thanksgiving and Christmas
gatherings. She had a wise patience with life and was an astute observer of culture, women’s issues, and
the political arena.
She is survived by her children Jeffrey (Janel), Gregory (Barbara), Robert (Jenny) and Elizabeth
(Mark) Grybko. She is also survived by grandchildren and great grandchildren David, Kristen (Doug),
Katherine, Chris, Stephanie, Jesse, Abigail, Annaleigh, Alexander, Ada, Gillian and Harper Rose, and by
her niece, Suzan Whitehead, and many nieces and nephews. Pat was a shining light in the lives of her
family, and her contributions to their well-being will be remembered and missed. Thanks to the staff of
Care Advantage, Branchlands Retirement Community, Linden House and Legacy Hospice for their care
and compassion, especially April, Carson, Maryanne, Chrystal, Ashley, Tiffany and Bridget. A memorial
Mass will be held at a later date.