GREEN BAY (NBC 26) — Patricia "Pat" Smits, the owner of the Redwood Inn, has passed away at the age of 79. Her family said she died as a result of an unexpected aneurysm.
She was a mother, grandmother, restaurant owner, and an outstanding member of our community.
According to her obituary, Smits and her husband went into business opening the Redwood Inn, which has served families for the past 58 years.
"My mom was absolutely amazing. She loved everybody and everybody loved her," said Jennifer Sipes, Patricia's daughter. "The stories people would come up and tell me were remarkable. It was like oh my gosh my mom made a huge impact on all of people in this community."
It said Pat was known as one of the kindest people who always thought of her family and customers over herself.
Pat started the business cooking in the kitchen and later became the greeter as customers walked into the door. She made her way from table to table, visiting with customers, and ensuring that their dinner was up to their expectations.
“She was the best mom a person could ever have, she was the best partner to ever be with, but most of all she loved her family, she loved her Redwood family, and she loved her customers. She was the host that was out there going table to table, talking and just interacting with customers and making sure everything was good,” said Patricia's son, John Smits.
Her favorite morning routine was saying the rosary and talking with her sister Jackie as they drank their coffee.
“She had her faith, she put her faith in us. And you have to believe she’s in a better place and we know she’s in a better place,” John said.
She had a special place in her heart for her grandchildren. They were her pride and joy. She never missed a band concert or sporting event that she was able to attend.
Pat also liked going on gambling trips to Vegas. Most recently, she went with her friends on trips to Biloxi, Mississippi.
Her children describe her as selfless ready to lend out a helping hand especially if a customer was in need.
“She would give them money and say ‘use it for clothes for the baby, or use it for getting diapers or whatever. She’s done that I don’t know how many times for people," said her son John.
She is survived by her two children along with grandchildren and other family.
They say the simplest pleasures in life always brought her great joy.
“The best memories there are our Christmases. She went over and beyond after my dad died for our Christmases because my dad died on Christmas. She made it the best for us, we still have to have our Christmases, and she decorated our house to the nines and stuff like that," John said.
You can read her full obituary here, where you can leave your online condolences.