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Valsa Pattara

Valsa Elizabeth Pattara, 70, of Clarks Green, PA passed away on February 8, 2021 due to complications related to amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). She passed peacefully in her sleep at home with her family by her side.

Valsa was born to Ulahanan (John) and Aleyamma (Elizabeth) Thoppil in Trivandrum, Kerala, India on March 24, 1950. When she was 5 years old, the family moved to Kochi, Kerala where she attended St. Teresa's school and college until she married Varghese Thomas Pattara on May 30, 1968. Valsa and Varghese lived together in Kochi before emigrating to Scranton, PA in 1970.

Ulahanan Thoppil, her father, funded libraries near his village of Matakara, Kerala. He passed his belief in charity and love of education on to Valsa who had a passion for reading about current events and human-interest stories. She grew up in India reading Reader's Digest as well as Time and Life magazines and, more recently, was frequently on her iPad catching up on world events. She instilled this love of reading and learning in all of her children and grandchildren and was proud of each of their accomplishments - including little Bodhi reading to her. Having studied in an all girls Catholic school herself, she was a strong believer in Catholic education for her children and grandchildren.

Following in her mother's footsteps, Valsa was happiest when cooking for others, particularly for parties and holidays. She was renowned for her Kerala dishes as well as for Italian hoagies - which she learned while volunteering at the school kitchen when her children attended St. Mary's Visitation in Dickson City. She took great pride in the fact that her daughters, Beena, Theresa and Elizabeth, all enjoy cooking and entertaining - including making her friend Stephie's American apple pie.

Valsa was a loving and doting wife, mother, grandmother, sister, aunty and friend. She never happier than when cooking her family's favorite meals. She loved caring for children - she never met a baby she couldn't make smile. She thoroughly enjoyed looking after and spending time with her grandchildren as well as nieces and nephews. She never turned down the chance to get down on the dance floor, especially with her grandchildren.

Valsa was a devout Catholic and member of St. Gregory's parish in Clarks Green, PA. She strived to emulate the Blessed Mother's devotion to Christ. She was grateful to complete pilgrimages to various shrines and holy sites including Our Lady of Guadalupe, Rome, Fatima, Lourdes and finally Israel for Easter in 2018 where she and Varghese renewed their wedding vows at the Church in Cana to celebrate their 50th wedding anniversary.

Valsa is survived by her husband of 53 years, Varghese, her three children Thomas Pattara (Beena) of South Abington Township, Theresa Pattara of Alexandria, VA, and Elizabeth Schuster (Chad) of Chicago, IL; grandchildren Elizabeth and Varghese Pattara and Adelaide Bodhi Schuster; sister Santha Thomas Chunkapurackal (Thomachan) of Kochi; brothers-in-law Joseph Erat of Baton Rouge, LA and George Vallicad of Bangalore, India; sister-in-law Rosamma Thomas of Syracuse, NY; and dozens of nieces, nephews and godchildren.

She is preceded in death by sister Dr. Mary Joseph, brother Dr. Joseph Thoppil and sister Lalitha Vallicad.

The family wishes to thank the following for their hospitality, care, and advice throughout Valsa's ALS journey: Santha & Thomachan, Jose and Mercy Pattara, Dr. Rosamma Thomas, Dr. Cissy Pottanat, Lisa Varkey, PharmD, BCPS, and the staffs of the ALS Association, the ALS Clinic at Geisinger Hospital and the Hospice of the Sacred Heart.

A virtual prayer vigil and funeral mass will be held for family and close friends. Zoom information by request. Interment will be private at Cathedral Cemetery, Scranton. A Celebration of Life and Memorial Service will be scheduled at a future date when COVID transmission risks have subsided.

In keeping with Valsa's commitment to charitable giving and education, in lieu of sending flowers, the family prefers that donations be made in her memory to Regina Dominican High School, 701 Locust Rd, Wilmette, IL 60091, where Elizabeth Schuster is currently President and where a memorial fund has been established in Valsa's name.

To plant memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Valsa Pattara, please visit our flower store.


We have many fond memories of Valsa aunty. She was our Clarks Summit neighbor, close family friend, and a dear mother to us all. She was as graceful and poised as her collection of porcelain dolls. We will dearly miss aunty and pray that God’s assurance of everlasting life for the faithful will bring comfort to Varughese uncle, Sunil, Beena, Elizabeth, Varughese and loved ones. With prayers, Shiny, Dr. Denny, Dr. Kevin, Jordan, Jason

Shiny, Dr. Denny, Dr.Kevin, Jordan, Jason Feb 11 2021 12:00 AM

Theresa -So sorry to hear about your mother's passing. May her soul Rest in Peace. Loved reading about your mom and what a blessing she had been to so many. Praying that God gives you and your family strength during these tough times.Take care,Shalini Urankar

Shalini Urankar Feb 10 2021 12:00 AM

Valsa aunty was such a happy simple soul......I clearly remember our meeting on her last visit to Kerala.That day she spoke about so many things....she was so content and cheerful.We dedicate our humble prayers and Holy masses to her.May her soul attain eternal peace.ߙϰߏܰߙϰߏܰߙϰߏ¼Heartfelt Condolences to the bereaved family.

Smitha Varghese Alukka Feb 10 2021 12:00 AM

This is Ciciliamma Chechi (Josekuttychayan’s sister from Australia). Heard the news from Celin and Tomy.Our Valsamma is now in heaven, with Jesus.Rosamma’s beautiful words, from a loving sister - in- law, touched me .Yes, Valsamma was a lovely person and was dear to all. Let her be There with her parents and siblings.We specially rememberLeelamma who went ahead of her .Let us all pray for one another.Chechi.

Ciciliamma John Feb 10 2021 12:00 AM

DR Bichu X Malayil Alappuzha

DR BichU X Malayil Feb 10 2021 12:00 AM

Condolence and PrayersI met valsamma aunty years back. Recall my memories she was a beautiful lady with aristocratic features... She is the fist cousine of my mother in law Gracy. More over she is the wife of My father s friend Mr Varghese Patta ,who is the brother of Mrs Alice moncy Malayil. I heard lovely words about her from Miny Appachan Neena and Thomas. RIP

DR BichU X Malayil Feb 10 2021 12:00 AM

Sending my love and prayers to the Pattara family during this difficult time.

Pearl Knauss Feb 9 2021 12:00 AM

I have known Valsa for a long time even prior to her marriage, as her late brother Joy was such a close classmate for me( whose shocking and untimely early demise, and we still continues to miss him), and so we used visit the family often, esp. during our holiday breaks.Valsa had always been a very loving, kind and a caring person, and we had the last opportunity of meeting up with her during her last holidays in Cochin, when only we realised that she was going through a rather terminally ill neurological disease, and we all admired how well she faced and coped with it.Whilst we all miss her very much for this loss, and pray to The Almighty God to give her departed soul Rest In Peace.Dr Mathew( Mathukutty)

Dr Mathew(Mathukutty) Feb 9 2021 12:00 AM

Mrs P was one sweet lady! Her smile was infectious and her generous spirit was unmatched. She molded three beautiful souls and for that, we are forever grateful. Please know that Mr P, Tommy, Tina, Liz and families are in our prayers at this most difficult time. May you all find peace. Xoxo

Karen Padula & Family Feb 9 2021 12:00 AM

Elizabeth, Chad and Bodhi, we are saddened by the news of the passing of Elizabeth's Mom.  We have no words to fil the void or ease the pain from her death.  We hope and pray that she has peace resting in the arms of her savior to whom she was so dedicated.  We also offer prayers for you and Valsa's entire family that all the cherished memories of her life will soothe some of the sadness from her passing.With prayers and best wishes,Denise and Jim Kane and family

The Kane Family Feb 9 2021 12:00 AM

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