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Paula F. Budinger

May 6, 1941 February 8, 2020
Paula F. Budinger
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Obituary for Paula F. Budinger

MONONA-Paula F. Budinger, age 78, of Monona, passed away peacefully after a short illness on Saturday, Feb. 8, 2020 at UW Hospital in Madison, Wis. on the Palliative Care floor. Paula was born on May 6, 1941, in Woonsocket, R.I., the daughter of Edward and Irene (Stasz) Fitzpatrick.

Paula graduated from Brown University with a Bachelor of Science in Biology. Moving to Palo Alto, Calif. to pursue graduate studies at Stanford, she met Roger Budinger, an electronics engineer from Chicago on a beach in Santa Cruz. They married on June 11, 1964, in Woonsocket, R.I. and lived in Palo Alto, where she worked in research labs at Stanford University and the Palo Alto VA Hospital, running one of the earliest electron microscopes. Paula and Roger had two children, Beth born in 1965 and Chris born in 1967 and continued working throughout their childhood. When her kids were in grade school, Paula decided to leave the lab setting to cultivate her passion for art and design, earning a degree in Interior Design at Canada College.

In 1979, they moved to Spokane, Washington and in 1980 to the Seattle area, where Roger worked as an electronics engineer at Boeing. Paula, who had a passion for helping people, changed her career focus to healthcare, first working as a nursing assistant, then an occupational therapy aide at a skilled nursing center for young people with disabilities. She became a friend, mentor and later legal guardian for Jeff Grant, who was like a son to her, until his untimely death in 1987. When her kids were in college, Paula went back to school too, becoming a Medical Assistant through Lake Washington Technical College. She worked in several clinics and later became a medical transcriptionist, retiring from this in 2007. Paula was an avid gardener and loved irises, competing in and judging iris competitions and hybridizing new types of irises.

In 2007, Paula and Roger moved to Madison, Wis., following their daughter Beth and her family. Chris moved to Madison in 2009 and helped care for both Roger and Paula.
At this point, she became an avid quilter, with a focus on color and design, and in 2015 started a blog called Paula B Quilts. Paula faithfully posted every week from her iPad about her quilting projects, about the background of the antique and mini quilts in her collection and her life, making many friends around the world. She was a member of Lakeview Moravian Community Church, the American Association of University Women and the Monona Quilt Group and Garden Club through the Monona Senior Center. She was an active member of the Frostwoods Community where she lived from 2010-2019.

Paula is survived by her daughter, Beth Frances (Timothy) Fahlberg; granddaughter, Sarah Anne Fahlberg; sister, Kathleen (Fitzpatrick) May, and by her many friends. She was preceded in death by her parents; husband, Roger (2010); and her son, Chris (2015).

A celebration of life will be held at FROST WOODS SENIOR APARTMENTS, 101 Frost Woods Rd, Monona, at 2 p.m. on Sunday, March 1, 2020.

Memorials may be made to Lakeview Moravian Church.

Online condolences and memories of her may be shared at or on her blog Paula B Quilts

Gunderson East
Funeral & Cremation Care
5203 Monona Drive
(608) 221-5420

Previous Events

Celebration of Life




2:00 PM 3/1/2020 2:00:00 PM
Frost Woods Senior Apartments

101 Frost Woods Road
Monona, WI 53716

Frost Woods Senior Apartments
101 Frost Woods Road Monona 53716 WI
United States

Memorial Contribution

Lakeview Moravian Community Church (Madison)

3565 Tulane Ave
Madison, WI 53714

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