On Thursday, March 3, 2011, Pamela B. Hicks passed away, at home, after a long battle with lung cancer. A native of Granville, New York, she was the daughter of the late Mr. and Mrs. Mansir Waite Hicks, Jr.
Pam lived an adventurous and full life as an advocate, nurse, therapist, teacher, leader, friend and, most importantly, a mother.
She graduated from the Northfield School for Girls in East Northfield, Massachusetts (’64); and from Yale University, with a Master’s of Science in Nursing, with honors specializing in mental health and psychiatric nursing (’87).
An avid runner since 1972, Pam was an early advocate of mind-body fitness and was inspired by Asian medicine and belief systems. She opened a fitness studio for women, called Santé, in 1979, in Martinsville, Virginia and was later invited to attend the first National Conference on Physical Fitness in Washington, DC.
She was an outspoken and tenacious advocate for those POW-MIA soldiers in Southeast Asia, seeking full account for those still missing. Pam will be remembered by many Vietnam Veterans as a voice cheering for them in Parades, Rolling Thunder, and on Capitol Hill.
In 2005, having being diagnosed with non-smoking lung cancer, she became an advocate for those with the disease. She called for early detection and screening for smokers, former smokers, and those with a family history. As a member of the NY Executive Committee of the Lung Cancer Alliance and the NY State Cancer Consortium, she helped educate communities, healthcare providers and the legislature about the stigma of lung cancer and its impact on research and treatment.
Pam is survived by her daughter, Dr. Sarah E. Lefebvre-Petras and husband, Darwin M. Petras; her son John Jason Lefebvre; her sister Cora Hicks Perry and husband Zane C. Perry; her brother, Charles V. Hicks and wife Beverly C. Hicks; and by numerous nephews, nieces, grand nephews, grand nieces, and countless cousins, and friends.
She was preceded in death by her parents Mansir Waite Hicks Jr. and Thelma Barker Hicks; the father of her children, John Paul Lefebvre, and her dear brother, Mansir “Mac” Waite Hicks, III.
A memorial service will be held at St. Paul’s Episcopal Church in Wells, Vt. at noon on Saturday, March 12, 2011; with a gathering to follow at The Barn Restaurant and Tavern in Pawlet, Vt.
In lieu of flowers, memorial donations can be made online to The Lung Cancer Alliance or, by phone, to the Slate Valley Museum