Bud Grant’s Wife Patricia Bellew: Together Till Her Last Breath

By AustinPublished on: February 27, 2024 Updated on: February 27, 2024
Birthday 1928
Birthplace Minnesota
Death March 04, 2009
Age 81 years
Husband Bud Grant
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Patricia Bellew‘s prominence comes from being the wife of the former NFL player and coach Bud Grant. Together for over five decades, Patricia upheld her wedding vows as she was with her husband until her tragic demise in 2009. Only death could have parted them, and it did. She was an essential part of his life and career.

Initially, her spouse made a name for himself as a player and later as a coach. Following his coaching career, Bud was an executive consultant at the Minnesota Vikings from 1986 to 2022. Sadly, Grant is no more, and he passed away in 2023, leaving an indelible mark on American football.

Though gone, the tale of their union is quite compelling. Patricia, also known as Pat Grant, was everything the football star wanted in a partner.

Bud Grant’s Wife, Patricia Bellew, Was A Humble Volunteer

Patricia was born in 1928 in Minnesota and graduated high school from St. Paul Murray. She earned her Bachelor’s Degree, with a home economics major and journalism minor from the University of Minnesota.

Besides, Pat’s life was rooted in her 30 years of volunteering at Fairview Southdale Hospital, running errands and delivering supplies.

Bud Grant's wife, Patricia Bellew, dedicated 30 years of her life to volunteering
Patricia volunteered at a hospital for 30 years.

A testament to her kind spirit, she spent time in the hospital’s family lounge, comforting the families of the patients. From October 1973 to May 2003, she recorded more than 6,000 hours of volunteering.

Patricia Bellew Was The Patient Wife, Bud Grant Wished For

1950 was a year of triumph for the deceased athlete. He also played in the NBA for the Minneapolis Lakers and was a critical member in their championship win that year. For his contributions to the team and his full season’s paycheck, he received six thousand dollars, which, according to Grant, “was enough” to “get married on, have a family and buy a house and buy a car.”

That is exactly what the former defensive end did. He married Patricia, his college sweetheart, that year. When they were dating, Bud did not have a car. So, his friend, Jim Finks, used to be their chauffeur.

Patricia Bellew was everything Bud Grant wanted in a wife
Patricia and Bud tied the knot in 1950.

For their honeymoon, they went for duck hunting. Hunting, in general, was something the pair did as a pastime. Mr. Grant used every excuse to spend time with his loving spouse and their family.

In his The NY Times article, he called himself blessed to have everything he wanted in his life. He wrote,

A good coach needs a patient wife, a loyal dog and a great quarterback, but not necessarily in that order. I happen to have been blessed with all three. (sic)

The Grant Couple Raised Six Children Together

During their union, Mr. and Mrs. Grant became parents to six wonderful kids: Kathy Fritz, Laurie Tangert, Peter, Mike, Bruce, and Daniel Grant. All of them are grown up now and have their own families and children.

Bud Grant and his wife, Patricia Bellew, had six children
Patricia was a loving mother to six children.

Unfortunately, Bruce passed away on July 25, 2018, from brain cancer.

While all of Bud’s little ones played football, only Mike followed in his father’s footsteps. He started his coaching journey at Minnetonka High School in 1979 and was the head coach of Forest Lake from 1981 to 1986 and 1989 to 1991. Mike was also the head coach of Eden Prairie High School, starting in 1992, and led the team to their 11 state championships.

One of the Grant couple’s grandsons, Ryan Grant, played as a quarterback and linebacker at Eden Prairie and the University of Minnesota.

Sadly, Patricia Bellew Passed Away In 2009

Bud’s world turned upside down when his wife of 59 years passed away on March 4, 2009, at the age of 81, at Fairview Southdale Hospital, where she volunteered for three decades. She had severe Parkinson’s complications, which became the cause of her death.

Pat had been hospitalized for ten days before her passing.

Although Pat is gone, she lives through her children. Along with her volunteering work, she was a devoted wife and mother. She was always there for anyone who needed her, and everyone who knew her only had good things to say about her.

Pat was described as a “consummate homemaker.”

Bud Grant Found New Pat After His Spouse’s Demise

Following his wife’s passing, Bud met Patricia Smith, whom he called “Special Pat.” While the exact details of their meeting remain elusive, the new Pat was his support system. They were not married, but she was by his side until he took his last breath.

Similarly, the late football player described Pat as “a godsend” and said she fit in with the family and looked after them, just like the family looked after her.

Likewise, Grant was always fond of pets. He and Pat added a dog, Lily, to their family in April 2019. Even after decades, he had everything he wanted in his youth — a patient partner and a loyal dog.

After his wife, Patricia Bellew's death, Bud Grant was in a relationship with Patricia Smith
Bud and Special Pat having a good time with Lily.

In this way, the Hall of Famer passed away at his home in Minnesota on March 11, 2023, at the age of 95. Special Pat was with him till his last breath. His legacy and the lives he touched will forever live.