Prafull Chhaganbhai PATEL
March 27, 1943 – September 27, 2020
Prafull Chhaganbhai Patel, 77, passed quietly on Sunday, September 27, 2020, at Mayo Clinic Hospital, not far from his home in Jacksonville, Florida. Prafull was survived by his loving wife of fifty years, Bina Patel; his son, Parth Patel, of San Jose, California; and his daughter, Ulka Patel Shriver, son-in-law Trip Shriver, and granddaughter Sabina MacLachlan Patel Shriver, of Ponte Vedra Beach - all of whom were around him as he passed. Prafull was survived also by his sister, Kailasben Patel, of Cary, North Carolina, and eight nieces and nephews, the children of his sisters. He was predeceased by his parents, Chhaganbhai and Dahiben Patel, as well as his sisters Manjula, Sarla and Madhu Patel.
Prafull grew up in Ahmedabad, Gujrat, India. In 1966, he was invited to emigrate to the United States of America to study engineering, and he adventured to America with one of his oldest friends, Manoj Patel. Here, he earned his master’s of science in electrical engineering from the New Jersey Institute of Technology. Prafull worked for IBM, Unisys, GE and ITT serving the U.S. Department of Defense to develop encryption technologies and design satellite memory systems through his retirement. Prafull was a proud American citizen.
In 1970, Prafull married Bina, and convinced her to join him on what he billed as an American adventure of a few years, till they’d be ready to settle down. She joined him in Newark, New Jersey, and holding her master’s of science in early childhood education, commenced her stateside career working for the underserved community’s children via the Head Start program. Prafull introduced his young bride to driving on highways, New York style pizza, and plen-air ice skating in cold American winters. They visited as many National Parks as they could, on both coasts. Prafull became a passionate fan of the Philadelphia Eagles.
This adventure never ended, and home became southeastern Pennsylvania, where they raised their family and lived for forty years. The family made many dear, lasting friends – beginning with Mita and Avijit Ghosh and Jill and Bill Chendorain in the 1970s, and continuing with so many others in the Royersford and Collegeville communities. Friends were the family they made for themselves, when so far from home. Ulka and Parth attended Perkiomen Valley public schools and graduated with honors from P.V. High in 1993 and 1997, respectively. Prafull and Bina supported their educational endeavors with great dedication, well beyond into universities and cities across America. As a dad, he usually came off strict and stern by day, but so generous in his sacrifices and care when looking back year by year. His children are who they are, in times calling for strength and steadiness, because of his distinct influence.
Prafull gave his best self to his granddaughter, Sabina. He and Bina retired to northeast Florida to keep close to her. Prafull always insisted on supporting Sabina’s dance education as her doting benefactor, and with Bina he was in attendance at every elementary school presentation, sporting event and art show as well as at countless dance recitals and competitions. Sabina remembers Grandpa fondly for introducing her to sitcoms and his sneaky tactics during spirited games of hide and seek tag. Even as a toddler, she always noticed when Grandpa withdrew from social conversations and supported him quietly.
In his final years, Prafull studied Vedanta spiritual philosophy, and came to live a more quiet life. However, around the time of his passing, Prafull has been honored by family and friends for his past endeavors in civics – for making it possible for so many nieces and nephews not only to emigrate to America but furthermore to thrive in their education, work and contributions back to society, for supporting organizations and campaigns to help reclaim fairness, justice, and public service in American governance. It was his hope that these humble endeavors will be meaningful to young generations of his family. We know they will.
Monday, October 12, 2020
Prafull Chhaganbhai PATEL
October 13, 2020
Bina, Ulka & Parth,
We are so sorry for your loss. In the short time we have known Prafull, we became very fond of him. In meeting him you quickly sensed his personality to be kind and inquisitive. In getting to know him, that assumption turned out to be accurate. Seeing him outside, mostly daily, he would always ask “ what are you doing”, followed by a pleasant conversation. He is going to be missed. God bless you.
Karen & Bruce
October 12, 2020
Dear Binamami , Ulka , and Parth ,
We are so sorry for your loss, our loss. Prafull mama was very special to me. His sweet memories are going to be with me forever.
Our prayers are with you Binamami, Ulka, Trip, Parth and little Sabina.
Love you all.
Mina and Suresh.
October 11, 2020
Ulka & Parth
It is still hard for us to believe this sad news. We knew Prafulbhai since 41 years from Royersford, PA to Jacksonville, FL. We met them at someone's house and we become family friend.Can't forget his big help to rent our house and take care of it when ever needed. He always shared his great thoughts about many things. We have seen their beautiful house they made in PA and shared many things like he sent me a great program of designing your own house. He was very knowledgeable in many fields and always gave best advise when ever asked. He was a man with principal and will be definitely missed. Janam & Maran is part of life but his memories will be always with us.
You and all family members are in our prayers during this difficult period. Accept our condolences. GOD BLESS. RIP.
Ohm Namah Shivay.
October 10, 2020
Dear Bina, Ulka and Parth, this is Mona writing for Sunil. We are very shocked to hear the news. Prafullbhai was Sunil’s friend since his school days at CN school in Ahmedabad. He remembers him as a very good and honest friend who he visited after school. He loved sports, he ran and played table tennis at Sunil’s house. We have fond memories of our families meeting in Pennsylvania, and our final meeting when we took time off from Disney to visit him in 2016. He will truly be missed by all of us. Regards to Kailasben.
October 10, 2020
Dear Binaben, Ulka, Parth & Family,
We are so deeply sorry for your loss.
It was all so sudden. The obituary truly captures the essence of who Prafullbhai was as a person and his legacy. He will certainly be missed.
May Prafullbhai's soul be at peace.
May He give you and the rest of your family the strength to bear this loss through the cherished memories he has left behind.
Om Shanti Shanti.
Jai Shri Krishna,
Manish, Arati, Neesirg & Shamik.
October 8, 2020
We are deeply saddened by the untimely loss of Prafullbhai. Our heartfelt condolences to everyone in the family.
Myself personally, I got to know you all when we were living in NJ and the entire family visited us. I remember the good times where we went to the beaches near by and had some fun in the summer time. We all separated after those few years but vividly remember Prafullbhai's kind smile and enjoying with the kids.
May Prafullbhai's soul rest in peace.
October 6, 2020
To the entire Patel family-
There are no words to express my sympathies to you all. You are in my thoughts and prayers. From what I knew of Mr. Patel he was an incredible man who was the patriarch of an incredible family. I hope that you find comfort in these difficult times. May he Rest In Peace.
October 6, 2020
There are more happy memories over many years than could possibly be shared in even 2000 words. Prafull was our neighbor for several years and our excellent friend for decades. A wonderfully intelligent man who may have by choice kept quite a bit of himself quiet, Prafull lots of times had a real twinkle in his eye. Prafull and Bill shared many interests - especially the Eagles and enjoyed being together. Bill planned our 6 week trip to JAX Beach in January 2019 and it was very special for us. Especially spending time with Prafull, Bina, Parth, Ulka, Trip and Sabina. We were surrounded by this wonderful family’s love. And we enjoyed watching Eagles games with Prafull while respectfully obeying game watching rules🏈🤫! Bill and both admired and loved our dear friend Prafull. I am so glad Prafull was a part of our lives.
September 30, 2020
Dear Binaben Ulka and Parth
May your beautiful memories sustain and bring comfort to you during this difficult time. Please accept our deepest sympathies. Our prayers are with you during this time. May your memories of Prafullbhai and the love of your family surround you and give you strength and peace in the days ahead.
ANITA & KUNAL PATEL