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Life Story / Obituary
Tracy Drake was a vibrant person. A generous, warm, and jovial spirit, she leaves behind a rich collection of wonderful memories. She treasured making connections with other people through her long conversations, opening up her home, or simply engaging them in her great sense of humor. She was a stranger to none and a friend to many. All who knew Tracy would agree that she was a blessing to everyone she met. Life didn’t seem to get her down, as she was always smiling and kept things light-hearted in times of hardship. Tracy was very outgoing and didn’t seem to ever really slow down. She loved being active as a mom, as a member of her community, and as a creative spark in an artist’s world. Tracy’s laughter, love, and special way of making everyone feel special will be greatly missed.
It is no surprise that Tracy’s story begins in the 1960’s which were characterized as the era of optimism. Many Americans believed they were standing at the dawn of a golden age. At the beginning of this promising decade in our nation’s history, Paul & Sally (Dale) Fitzpatrick welcomed home their newborn daughter, Tracy born on July 20, 1964 in Hastings, Michigan. Her birth brought them much hope and happiness.
Growing up in Orangeville to hard working parents; her father, Paul a mechanic and her mother, Sally a homemaker, Tracy had a happy childhood. She was the youngest of three girls and a true animal lover. As a young adolescent she had family dogs as well as horses to keep her company and teach her the value of caring for animals. The family enjoyed many memorable trips to Northern Michigan and also to Daytona during race week. She was an avid race fan as well as both a cheerleader and a track star. Tracy graduated with the Class of 1982 from Martin Public Schools before completing one year at Western Michigan University. Knowing that she wished to pursue a career in cosmetology, she left WMU for a beauty school degree which brought her great success in numerous area salons over the years. Wanting to explore what the world had to offer, Tracy spent a short time living in Florida but became homesick and returned to be near her close knit family.
Not to be forgotten was the meeting of the love of her life, Nathan Drake. The two of them were out in Las Vegas in 2001 for the Professional Bull Riding World Cup and Tracy’s mom is said to have played matchmaker setting them both up at the trade show. They were madly in love and wanting to share the rest of their lives together, they married in Nathan’s hometown of Farmington, Maine on December 7th of that same year. A country girl at heart, Tracy loved the outdoors and felt that she had married a true cowboy. Nathan moved to Orangeville where they started their family with the birth of their daughter, Tanner Jo. The happy couple returned to Las Vegas on many occasions to vacation and reminisce about their love story in a place that was special to their hearts. As a family, they also enjoyed vacations back to Maine as well as the beautiful areas of Tennessee, Kentucky and Florida.
Tracy had the type of personality that never allowed her to remain idle. In fact, she had a wide variety of special interests and hobbies. She was world renown for her work with wool. She very much enjoyed spinning her own yarn and making everything imaginable with it; and shipped her wool products around the world. She had a very entrepreneurial spirit! She was very crafty and creative, making everything from her famous wool products to jewelry, candles, and homemade soaps. Tracy had a special spot for anything purple! If it was purple, she bought it!
She was a very easy-going person with a positive outlook on life. Nothing really seemed to get her down. If she was upset, all she needed was a Babe Ruth candy bar to put her mood back to normal. She truly loved people and was especially fond of children. Over the years, she was often thought of as a second mom to so many. Described as a very principled and grounded person who was famous for her sparkling grin, Tracy will be deeply missed and lovingly remembered by all who knew and loved her.
Tracy Drake, age 52 of Orangeville went to be with the Lord on December 10, 2016. Visit with her family and friends on Friday, December 16 from 1:00 – 2:00 at the Orangeville Baptist Church: 6921 Marsh Rd. in Orangeville. A funeral service will follow at 2:00 p.m. at the same location. Tracy’s family includes her husband of 15 years, Nathan Drake; their daughter: Tanner Jo Drake; her parents; sister Robin (Louie) Dertouzos as well as several cousins, nieces, and nephews. Tracy was preceded in death by her sister Kelly. Please visit Tracy’s memory page at www.lifestorynet.com where you can archive a memory or photo and sign her memory book online. Memorial donations can be made to Faith Hospice.