Pat Garlits Passes
Wife of legend drag racer dies at 79
Andy Bolig - February 05, 2014 04:11 PM
She has been suffering a lot these last few days and it was a blessing to see God take her into his care
The drag racing world was rocked as news of racing legend Don Garlits' wife of nearly 61 years succumbs to illness on Sunday February 2.
Pat Garlits spent a lifetime watching her man go flat out. Watching speed records fall with regularity and enduring crashes that would have sidelined many drivers, and marriages, was all part of the deal when she decided to spend her life with the man who would come to be known as "Big Daddy".
Pat Garlits was constantly at her husband’s side as he became one of the sport’s all-time greats. She died at the couple’s home in Ocala, Fla., near the Don Garlits Museum of Drag Racing following a lengthy battle with Parkinson’s disease.
“My dear wife of nearly 61 years left this world this afternoon,” Don Garlits wrote in an email to the Leesburg (FL.) Daily Commercial on Sunday. “She has been suffering a lot these last few days and it was a blessing to see God take her into his care.”
Pat Garlits is survived by her husband, daughters and sister, as well as grandchildren Kirsten Capitano Watley, Rodney Donald Garlits, Sarah Lyn Smith, Benjamin Gregory Capitano and Anna Elizabeth Capitano; and great-grandchild Braden Alexander-James Garlits.
The family asks that in lieu of flowers, donations be made to World Vision (www.worldvision.org), through which Pat and Don have long supported needy children.