Remembering Aunt Blanche

Aunt Blanche Milligan, Beloved Outdoor Leader at PFC, passes away at age 102

Aunt Blanche was the Outdoor and Overnight Hiking leader at Pine Forest Camp for over 50 years. She was a very special part of PFC as was her husband Uncle Mike Milligan. For generations of campers, she embodied the beauty and strength of the great outdoors. She was an original. In her pleated khaki shorts and scout blouse, with windswept grey hair, she drove a green truck named “Greenie” and always had a trusty dog beside her. She was a camp legend.

Aunt Blanche lead many a camper to their first true encounter with the wonders of nature. She took girls out on overnight hikes, picked wild blueberries and taught them to cook over an open fire. She was a true naturalist and environmentalist long before the first Earth Day or an EPA. She was a Pioneer.

Aunt Blanche was a gentle but hearty soul. A humble, natural, unassuming woman, she took great joy in introducing campers to the simple, natural life. She knew that for some campers it would be the one and only time in their lives that they would come face to face with the natural, wild world. She was small in stature but she was mighty.

Aunt Blanche and her love of nature will always remain as much a part of Pine Forest as the pine trees that surround us during summer and the sounds of laughter in the mountain air. May her lasting legacy be the many lives she touched at camp and in the world.

For those Alumni who would like to make a donation in her memory, her family is recommending:

Juniata College: https://www.juniata.edu/ or the Central Pennsylvania Humane Society: https://www.centralpahumane.org/

Notes of condolences can be sent to Aunt Blanche’s sister, Carolyn Snow, at 143 Swartz Rd., Altoona, Pa. 16601

11 thoughts on “Remembering Aunt Blanche

  1. I was at Pine Forest Camp for three summers and that was over 40 years ago but I fondly remember Aunt Blanche and the overnights with her. She was a special human being and
    I’m sorry to learn of her passing. May her memory be a blessing. – Jill Scher Kaufman

  2. Sorry to hear this news .. had so much fun with aunt Blanche, and our sleep outs!
    She was truly a kind, gentle smart woman.. who also must have had a ton of patience to put up with us!

  3. What wasn’t there to love and admire about dear Aunt Blanche? She touched the lives of both campers and counselors in a uniquely inspiring way. She is what great memories are made of up where the sky begins.

    1. WOW! She and Mike were a wonderful couple. So glad I got to know her and that my children and grand children did as well. I also knew her niece from my hometown of Altoona and remember meeting her there when I lived and worked in Altoona.

  4. WOW! She and her husband Mike were legends, just fantastic people. Some of my best memories of Pine Forest Camp are the people I got too now. Blanche and Mike Milligan were loved by everyone. My children were campers at PFC and now two of my grandchildren are going back to PFC this summer. I a;so knew Aunt Branch’s niece who lives in my home town of Altoona.

  5. I will never forget Aunt Blanche and how as a young child she inspired my love of nature and the outdoors! I can still remember the overnight she took us on 45 years ago! She and her husband will forever be a part of PFC history.

  6. I was at PFC for 6 years back in the mid 90’s. I remember my first overnight and hike with Aunt Blanche. I still have the rock I picked during our hike. She taught me so much about plants and trees, facts I still remember today. She will be deeply missed. Thanks for everything!

  7. I was at PFC in the late 60’s and early 70’s. My children also went to PFC. Aunt Blanche and Uncle Mike loved the great outdoors and shared that live with us. Aunt Blanche was a very special person. My favorite times were camping with her as a camper and as a counselor.

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