Classic Elite Yarns

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Pat Chew  
Pat Chew
1939–2008

Memorial Service
2:30 pm, Sunday, June 29, 2008
Watch Hill Chapel
5 Bluff Ave.
Watch Hill, RI
Reception to follow in Stonington CT

Obituary
Pat (Sullivan) Chew, owner and CEO of  Classic Elite Yarns Inc, a leading presence among hand-knitting yarn companies in the US and Canada, lost her fierce battle against leukemia when she died at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston MA on May 16. Pat, who was 69, divided her time between homes in Stonington CT and Cambridge MA.

Classic Elite Yarns, in Lowell MA, has for over 30 years brought innovation and elegant design to the world of hand-knitting, importing and packaging specialty and luxury fibers such as mohair, cashmere, silks, wools and cottons. Two books that collect knitting designs and patterns from Classic Elite Yarns, Knitting the New Classics and Knitting Today’s Classics, have remained in print for 15 years.

A Red Sox enthusiast, Pat traveled yearly to spring training and rarely missed a home game.

An avid sailor, Pat was a member of the Watch Hill Yacht Club, the New York Yacht Club and the Stonington Harbor Yacht Club. She was a competitive racer, and, when she learned that the garage of her Stonington home would be too small for her Watch Hill 15 boat, the Diva, she had a hole cut and beautifully framed in her dining room wall to accommodate its stern. Pat traveled to Australia and Italy for the America’s Cup and helped found a committee to fund training for a women’s sailing team for the Beijing Olympics. She was a founding member of the Westerly Center for the Arts and the Stonington Harbor Yacht Club.

A gourmet cook and extravagant gardener, Pat was known for growing too many tomatoes, winning too many trophies, making great Caesar salads and for the 20 pound block of parmesan cheese she kept in her refrigerator. Pat maintained her own lobster pots and was known to serve meals with 5 or 6 lobsters per guest. A bird enthusiast, she installed a nest for ospreys on Quiambaug Cove, over which she kept watch through a telescope. Near the end of her life Pat incorporated into her view a bluebird house with a video camera installed inside.

She was predeceased by her former husband, William Chew, who passed away on January 5, 1998 and by their son, Daren Chew, who was lost at sea on June 29, 1994, while returning from the Newport-Bermuda race, in which he had placed 3rd. A memorial race, the Daren Chew 4th of July Memorial is held yearly at the Watch Hill Yacht Club.

Pat leaves a loving daughter, Tamara Gorski, a son-in-law, Joseph Gorski, and two splendid grandchildren, Caitlin and Alec Gorski, a brother, Jeffrey Vendetti and a wealth of devoted friends.        

To support Pat’s love for sailing, a memorial fund has been established.  Donations may be made to the
Pat Chew Memorial Fund
c/o Washington Trust Company
23 Broad Street
Westerly, RI  02891