White Rock woman who died in police custody ‘a kind soul’

Patricia Anne Wilson remembered for her "big smile."

Patricia Anne Wilson.

Patricia Anne Wilson.

A White Rock woman who died in police custody last week is being remembered as someone with a welcoming personality, who “always had a big smile.”

Patricia Anne Wilson, 58, died March 29 after she was found unresponsive just after 10:30 a.m. that morning.

The news surprised many, said Trisha Bunn, a South Surrey resident who knew Wilson from high school.

“A lot of friends didn’t know that it was Patti who had died – we all knew her as Patti – and many hadn’t seen her for some time,” Bunn said by email.

“I am so sad to hear that she has passed away. She was well-known and well-liked.”

According to police, Wilson had been arrested March 25 on an outstanding warrant, and was being held for a March 29 appearance in Surrey Provincial Court.

The Independent Investigations Office is investigating to determine if police action or inaction contributed to Wilson’s death. She had reportedly been assessed by paramedics less than four hours prior to being found unresponsive.

Bunn said other former classmates reacting to Wilson’s death have described her as “a kind and gentle soul (who) had a hard life.”

A member of Wilson’s family said they could not comment.

According to an obituary this week, Wilson is survived by her father, brother, and sister; a son, three daughters and six grandchildren.

A “time of remembering and celebrating” her life is set for 3-5 p.m. April 17 at Sunnyside Hall (1845 154 St.) in South Surrey.