Cover photo for Pat  Collins Fulkerson 's Obituary
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1931 Pat 2020

Pat Collins Fulkerson

June 2, 1931 — May 23, 2020

Pat Collins Fulkerson, 88, passed away on May 23, 2020 at The Greenhouse Cottages at Belle Meade, Paragould, Arkansas. Actually, her correct name was Patsy Collins Fulkerson, but she disliked the name “Patsy” and usually went by Pat or Patricia.

Pat was born on June 2, 1931 in Paragould, Arkansas to her parents Orris F. Collins and Frances Neely Collins. She graduated from Paragould High School and married Bill Fulkerson in Paragould in 1949. Her parents owned and operated the Capitol Theatre and Sunset Drive-In Theatres in Paragould. She was very proud that her parents, Orris and Frances Collins, donated the historic downtown Paragould Capitol Theatre built in 1925 to a not-for-profit organization in 1987, and the historic theatre is now a performing arts venue known as the Collins Theatre. She and her sister, Joan Collins Ratton, worked at the family theatres while growing up, and when Pat and Bill’s first child, Andy, was born in 1951 the baby spent many nights in a bassinette under the cash register while Pat worked at the Sunset Drive-In concession building.

Pat soon gave up theatre work to stay home and raise her three sons, Andy, Ricky and David. She returned to work at the Sunset Drive-In when her growing brood of children had reached at least high school age in the early 1970s. She continued to work in the family business until 1985 when the drive-in theatre was closed, and the land sold to Wal-Mart. Pat then went to work at the daycare center operated by her niece, Lanie Mangrum where she worked until her retirement in 2002. Her most rewarding job was working with young children at the daycare center and at the Sunday school nursery of First United Methodist Church in Paragould. Her brother-in-law, Dr. Ralph Ratton, called her the “Roadrunner” and said she “ran her traps” each day visiting and helping her sister, her children, and anyone else that came into her orbit that day.

In addition to a loved and loving member of a large extended family, she was also a licensed pilot. That role was taken on when her pilot husband, Bill, lost his airman’s medical certificate due to a heart condition. Bill Fulkerson was a commercial pilot, flight instructor, crop duster, FAA flight examiner, and contract instructor for the U.S. Air Force. So, it is likely that Bill still did most of the flying with Pat in the right seat as his co-pilot and the current medical certificate holder to make the flights legal. As with everything else in her life, Pat did what was necessary at the time to get the job done.

Pat was preceded in death by her parents, Orris and Frances Collins, and her husband, Bill Fulkerson. She is survived by three children, Andrew (Sonjia) Fulkerson, Rick Fulkerson, and David Fulkerson; grandson, Jon (Kia) Fulkerson; great grandchildren, Juli Fulkerson, Reese Fulkerson, and Eve Fulkerson, and step-great grandchild, Rylan Pay; her sister, Joan Collins Ratton; her brother, John N. (Roseann) Collins; nieces, Diane (Bill) Brewer, Donna (Preston) Bland, Elaine (Tim) Mangrum, Carol (Doug) Vail; nephew, Rob (Heather) Ratton; and numerous great nieces and nephews. She will be missed by all who knew and loved her.

Services will be under the supervision of Heath Funeral Home in Paragould with visitation at 10 am on Thursday, May 28, followed by services at 11:00 am both at the Colonial Chapel of Heath Funeral Home. Following the State of Arkansas COVID-19 guidelines, no more than 50 people will be allowed to gather inside of the funeral home at one time, maintaining social distancing of 6-foot between one another, and face masks will be required to enter the building. A private burial will precede the visitation and funeral.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests that memorials be sent to the Collins Theatre Foundation, PO Box 904, Paragould, AR 72450.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Pat Collins Fulkerson , please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services


Thursday, May 28, 2020

10:00 - 11:00 am

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Funeral Service

Thursday, May 28, 2020

11:00am - 12:00 pm

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.


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