Published May 23, 2024

Known for sharp intellect, wicked sense of humor,
and love of the outdoors

NORTH READING — Thomas Patrick “Pat” Widmer, of North Reading, died at home on Saturday, May 18, 2024 at age 72.  He was the beloved husband of Susan (Frederick) Widmer with whom he resided in North Reading for most of their nearly 46-year marriage.

Pat was born in New Kensington, Pennsylvania, just outside of Pittsburgh, on December 10, 1951 to Thomas F. Widmer and the late Mona (Cebula) Widmer.  He lived there during his early childhood before moving to the Philadelphia, Pennsylvania area, where he graduated from Villanova High School in June of 1969.  Pat served during the Vietnam War as a Radar Weapons Technician, largely stationed in Thailand, electing to enlist in the United States Air Force after drawing a very low draft number.

Pat built upon his Air Force training to establish a career as a Test Engineer, working contract and permanent positions in numerous companies around the Rte. 128 technology corridor. He was the Principle Test Engineer at PictureTel Corporation.  Prior to retirement, Pat established his own auto detailing business, Widmer’s Island, on Main Street in North Reading.

Pat was widely known for his sharp intellect, wicked sense of humor, and his love of the outdoors. He loved canoeing and camping with his family. He was an accomplished motorcycle rider, favoring dirt bikes and nimble street bikes. He was a masterful trout fisherman, spending countless hours in the ponds, rivers, and streams around Massachusetts and New Hampshire. He also loved coastal fishing for striped bass and shad. The Berkshires became his second home as a result of his regular fishing pursuits.

Pat also enjoyed collecting Meerschaum Pipes, and amassed a wealth of knowledge about this unique stone and the Turkish carvers who turned pipe making into an art form in the mid-1900s. He was a man of strong opinions and wide range of interesting life experiences. He always had a colorful story (or several) to recount to friends both old and new.

In addition to his wife, Susan, he is survived by his daughter, Sandra (Widmer) Friederichs and her husband Robert Friederichs, of Flagstaff, Arizona.  Also surviving Pat are his father and wife, Thomas F. and Evelyn Widmer of California, Maryland; his brother, James Widmer and companion Mary Beth Rummel of Southern Shores, North Carolina; James’ former wife, Jeanne Maroney; his sister, Monica Hall and her husband Chuck Hall of Chelmsford; and his brother-in-law Stephen Frederick and his wife Bethany. In addition, he is survived by many nephews and nieces and their families.

Family and friends are cordially invited to visiting hours at the Cota Funeral Home, 335 Park St., North Reading (corner of Park St. and Rte. 28 at the Reading Line) on Saturday, May 25 from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m.

A Celebration of Pat’s life will be held immediately after the visitation at the Funeral Home at 12 p.m.

A Reception will be held following the services at the Horseshoe Restaurant, 226 Main Street, North Reading, following the service. All are invited to attend.

In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made in his honor to one of the following charities that were meaningful to Pat:

The Bob Woodruff Foundation, 1350 Broadway, Suite 905, New York, NY 10018 or online at or to Habitat for Humanity, 322 West Lamar Street, Americus, Georgia 31709 or online at or to World Central Kitchen, PO Box 96538, Washington, DC 20090 or online at

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