Patricia Ann “Tish” Blackburn, 79, Rochester, passed away Wednesday, May 15, 2019, at her residence.
On June 28, 1939, Patricia Ann Swanson was born in Fulton County. She was a cherished daughter of Carl E. and Helen I. Woolley Swanson. Growing up she shared her childhood with a big sister Phyllis. In 1957 she graduated from Rochester High School.
On June 2, 1957, Tish married the love of her life, Kenneth L. Blackburn in the Grace United Methodist Church of Rochester. From their union came three wonderful children: Julie, Doug and K.J. The family tree continued to grow with the added blessings of two more generations.
Tish was a devoted member of the Grace United Methodist Church for over six decades. She was a member of the Kum-Join-Us Sunday school class and taught vacation Bible school for many years. She was a member of “The Dinner Club,” for over 40 years, enjoying dining out with special friends monthly.
As entrepreneurs, Kenny and Tish owned and operated the Blackburn Tire Shop for many years. Following his sudden passing, she continued the family tradition. As a real estate professional broker-owner, Tish and Sharon Scobie operated Lakeshore Realtors and Lakeshore Mobile Home Park. Later Tish retired, but reassumed her career in real estate with Steve Gottschalk at the Gottschalk Realty. Tish had amassed vast knowledge in the realty markets and was honored to be appointed as “Realtor of the Year,” in 2005 by her peers of the North Central Indiana Association of Realtors. Tish served Fulton County cultivating real estate transactions for over 41 years. In 2003 she earned the distinction as GRI Graduate of the Real Estate Institute.
As an adventurer, Tish and Kenny would strike out on their Honda Gold Wing to catch the breeze and ride to various locales around the midwest. A favorite destination was Tennessee. In their motor home, they also annually visited Naples, Fla., to hit the beach and enjoy the sunshine, sand and surf. Kenny and Tish enjoyed camping from coast-to-coast and several visits to Jackson Hole.
Recently, Grandma Tish and the family have made many memories camping at Winamac State Park. She looked forward to Turkey Run. A memorable vacation was taken with her sister Phyllis to visit Hawaii for three weeks. To relax, Tish enjoyed QVC and the Hallmark Channel. She was the proud owner of a fine collection of shoes, and enjoyed trying out new recipes.
The matriarch of the Blackburn family, Grandma Tish was very proud to oversee four generations. She was a very active and vibrant grandma and GREAT-grandma. As a seasoned traveler, she planned special trips and introduced the grandchildren to New York City, Cincinnati Niagara Falls and Jackson Hole. At the holidays she organized the tradition of making and decorating Christmas cookies. It was professionally done with lots of love and everyone was attired in their own apron. Of course she conveyed great influence to her entire legacy seated by the campfires under the starlit skies.
Left to cherish Tish’s memory are a daughter, Julie Lynn Calvert and husband Marc, Rochester; two sons: Douglas Lee “Doug” Blackburn, South Bend, and Kenneth Jay “K.J.” Blackburn and wife Amy,Rochester; eight grandchildren: Corey Calvert and wife Amy, Chad Calvert and wife Jodi, Brandi Haberer and husband Brian, Brittany Foreman and husband Shawn, Bree Blackburn and companion Randy Hayes, Grant Blackburn, Annie Love and husband Nick, Carlee Blackburn; twelve great-grandchildren: Brayden Calvert, Cora Calvert, Kenna Calvert, Rhett Calvert, Zella Foreman, Charlee Foreman, Lilly Haberer, Lukas Haberer, Ayana Carr, Rai’ Anna Hayes, Bentley Blackburn, Zuri Blackburn and baby Love due to arrive on December 3, 2019; brother-in-law: Paul Howard; sister-in-law: Anne Blackburn; and several nieces, nephews and cousins.
Preceding Tish in death are her parents: Carl & Helen Swanson; beloved husband, Kenny, on May 1, 1992; a sister, Phyllis Howard on Oct. 4, 2016; sister-in-laws: Liz Zellers and Dorthea Blackburn; brother-in-laws: Bill Blackburn, Bob Blackburn, John Blackburn and Homer Clevenger,
A celebration of the life of Patricia A. “Tish” Blackburn will be at 2 p.m. on Sunday, May 19, 2019, in the Grace United Methodist Church, 201 W. 7th St., Rochester. Rev. Maurice Grindle will officiate. Friends may visit with the family from 2 – 7 p.m. in the Good Family Funeral Home, 1200 W.18th St. Rochester, and one hour prior to the service in the church. Interment will be in the Rochester IOOF Cemetery. Memorials may be made the Grace United Methodist Church 201 W. 7th Street, Rochester, IN. 46975 Electronic expressions of sympathy may be made to the family at www.goodfamilyfh.com.
Good Family Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.