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Patsy Ramsey's Geni Profile

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Patricia Ann "Patsy" Ramsey (Paugh)

Birthdate: (49)
Birthplace: Gilbert, WV, USA
Death: June 24, 2006 (49)
Atlanta, GA, USA
Immediate Family:

Daughter of Donald Ray Paugh and <private> Rymer
Wife of <private> Ramsey
Mother of JonBenét Patricia Ramsey and <private> Ramsey
Sister of <private> Paugh

Managed by: Private User
Last Updated:
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Immediate Family

About Patsy Ramsey

Patricia Ann "Patsy" Ramsey (née Paugh; December 29, 1956 – June 24, 2006) was the mother of JonBenét Ramsey, a 6-year-old American beauty pageant contestant who was murdered on December 25, 1996.


Ramsey was born in Gilbert, West Virginia to Nedra Ellen Ann (née Rymer) and Donald Ray Paugh. She graduated from Parkersburg High School in 1975, and went on to attend West Virginia University where she belonged to the Alpha Xi Delta sorority, and from which she graduated with a B.A. in Journalism in 1978. She won the Miss West Virginia beauty title in 1977 and her sister Pamela won the same title three years later.

She married John Ramsey on November 5, 1980. Their son, Burke, was born on January 27, 1987. She gave birth to her second child, JonBenét, on August 6, 1990 in Atlanta. The family moved to Boulder, Colorado in 1991.

Daughter's murder

After the murder of JonBenét in the family's home in December 1996, Boulder law enforcement officials declared that Patsy and her husband were "under an umbrella of suspicion" due to their possible involvement in the crime. The couple spent the next 10 years defending themselves against the allegations by insisting that an intruder killed their daughter. No charges have ever been filed against anyone for the murder.

On July 9, 2008, nearly 12 years after their daughter's murder, John and Patsy Ramsey were officially cleared in the death by the Boulder District Attorney's office based on new DNA evidence collected from JonBenet's clothing; this particular type of DNA analysis did not exist at the time of the killing. Boulder County District Attorney Mary Lacy said new DNA tests point to an "unexplained third party" as responsible for the murder.

A grand jury voted in 1999 to indict the parents of 6-year-old JonBenet Ramsey on charges of child abuse resulting in death, but then-Boulder District Attorney Alex Hunter refused to sign the indictment. Multiple sources, including members of the grand jury, have confirmed to the Daily Camera that Hunter refused to sign the indictment against John and Patsy Ramsey in connection with their child's death on Christmas night 1996, believing he could not prove the case beyond a reasonable doubt.

Defamation lawsuits

Several defamation lawsuits have ensued since JonBenét's murder. L. Lin Wood. was the plaintiff's lead attorney for John and Patsy Ramsey and their son Burke, and has prosecuted defamation claims on their behalf against St. Martin's Press, Time, Inc., The Fox News Channel, American Media, Inc., Star, The Globe, Court TV and The New York Post. John and Patsy Ramsey were also sued in two separate defamation lawsuits arising from the publication of their book, The Death of Innocence, brought by two individuals named in the book as having been investigated by Boulder police as suspects in JonBenét's murder. The Ramseys were defended in those lawsuits by Lin Wood and three other Atlanta attorneys, James C. Rawls, Eric P. Schroeder, and S. Derek Bauer, who obtained dismissal of both lawsuits including an in-depth decision by U.S. District Court Judge Julie Carnes that "abundant evidence" in the murder case pointed to an intruder having committed the crime.

In November 2006, Rod Westmoreland, a friend of JonBenét Ramsey's father, filed a defamation suit against Keith Greer, who posted a message on an Internet forum using the pseudonym "undertheradar". Greer had accused Westmoreland of participating in the kidnapping and murder. Greer has defended his statement.


Patsy Ramsey died after a battle with ovarian cancer on June 24, 2006 at the age of 49. She is buried at the St. James Episcopal Cemetery in Marietta, Georgia, next to her daughter. She died at 3:30 a.m. at her father's house with her husband by her side, lawyer Lin Wood said. She was originally diagnosed with cancer in 1993 when she was only 37, but was in remission for nine years until a recurrence in 2003.

In popular culture

Ramsey was portrayed by Alex Borstein in MADtv episodes 417 and 502; by Marg Helgenberger in the 2000 miniseries Perfect Murder, Perfect Town; and by soap opera actress Judi Evans in the 2000 TV movie Getting Away with Murder: The JonBenét Ramsey Mystery. She was also caricatured in the 2001South Park episode, "Butters' Very Own Episode." The South Park episode strongly implied that Patsy Ramsey with her husband were responsible for the death of JonBenét Ramsey. In a 2011 interview, South Park creators Trey Parker and Matt Stone stated that they regretted how the Ramseys were portrayed in the episode.

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Patsy Ramsey's Timeline

December 29, 1956
Gilbert, WV, USA
August 6, 1990
Age 33
Atlanta, Fulton County, Georgia, United States
June 24, 2006
Age 49
Atlanta, GA, USA