Frances Patterson (left) is seen in this 2007 photo taken at Berea First Baptist Church. (Courtesy: Benji Bishop)
GREENVILLE, SC (FOX Carolina) -
Funeral arrangements were made for 88-year-old Frances Patterson, a lifelong, well-known and sometimes colorful resident of Greenville's west side.
Patterson, who was better known to locals as "Hubba Hubba," peacefully died at her home on Calhoun Avenue about noon Monday, according to the Greenville County Coroner's Office.
The coroner's office said Patterson's health had been declining during the past couple of months.
"I still love her, I won't ever forget her," Gary Wilburn said.
Wilburn is Patterson's son. He said before his mother died, he told her he loved her.
"She was a good woman," Wilburn said.
Patterson was well known for wandering the streets of west Greenville, covering nearly 20 miles a day. In fact, when rumors of her death circulated in 2009, residents flooded local TV stations with calls of concern. Those residents created a Facebook group aimed at sharing memories of the sometimes-bearded lady.
"When I was a little girl, I would see her way over on Anderson Road, or walking toward Travelers Rest," Susan Morgan said. "I loved her, she was such a sweet woman."
Years later, Morgan became friends with Patterson's family and took Patterson in. She took care of her for several years, until the day she died.
"She had so much life in her, she could not be still," Morgan said.
Some of the memories shared recalled children who were frightened by her but as adults grew to respect and understand Patterson. Others in the group said she was a large part of the west side culture.
"You were an icon in Berea, and proof that no matter your station in life, people are capable of love," said one member on the group's wall. "You will be missed!"
"She was a bit of an odd character, but she was who she was - no excuses, no expectations," said another member. "She'll be missed!"
One member called on Berea to do something to honor Patterson. Another member suggested naming a street after her.
Patterson is survived by her son and granddaughter.
Visitation for Patterson was scheduled from 6 to 8 p.m. Sept. 3 at the Thomas McAfee Northwest Chapel at 6710 White Horse Rd. Her funeral was set for 3 p.m. Sept. 4 at the same location.
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