Patricia Anne Breed deKoven died at her home in Tisbury on April 5. She was 85 years old.
Ms. deKoven was born in New Jersey and attended Bard College. Afterwards she obtained a degree in occupational therapy in Boston and practiced in New York City. She was very musical and sang in the Dessoff Choir for many years.
Later, she lived in New Haven, Conn., where she worked with children, in particular an autistic child, for which she was written up in the New Haven Register.
She moved to Edgartown in the 1970s where she opened up the Mullen Way Nursery School. A dedicated teacher, she was much loved by her students and their parents alike.
Ms. deKoven is the author of several children’s books, including “If I Were a Wheel” and “Just About the Right Size.” She wrote many poems which were published in both English and Spanish, and she was a frequent contributor to local newspapers. She was fluent in several languages, including Spanish and Russian, and she played several instruments.
She had an insatiable thirst for all things spiritual and looked to traditions of the taoists, Tibetan buddhists, Zen masters, native Americans, and Christian mystics and countless others, including poets, artists, and musicians, in her quest to understand the destiny of her true self. In that sense, she had a faith in something beyond the mere material life, and she was very courageous in the past few months as her physical body came to fail her. Her beloved cat, Cricket, stayed by her side during this time and was a constant source of comfort and care, representing the epitome of love and loyalty.
She retired and moved to Vineyard Haven in the 1990s.
She was very dedicated to the cause of native-American rights, to which she contributed her book sales.
Ms. deKoven is survived by her sister, Susan, a nephew, and two nieces.