James William Patterson|
Born: April 6, 1922; in Wilmington
Died: March 10, 2014; in Dwight
James William Patterson, age 91, a lifelong resident of Braidwood, IL, passed away Monday, March 10, 2014, at Heritage Health in Dwight, IL.
He was born April 6, 1922 in Wilmington, IL. He was the second of three children born to the late James Robert and Esther Matilda (nee Nelson) Patterson. He was educated in Braidwood and was a graduate of the Braidwood High School Class of 1940. Upon graduation, he followed in the path of his father and became a Funeral Director and Embalmer. He graduated from Worsham School of Mortuary Science in 1941 becoming the fourth generation of the Patterson family to enter into funeral service. He worked at the Patterson Funeral Home in Braidwood with his father until he enlisted in the service.
He was a WWII Veteran of the United States Army, stationed in New Guinea from December 1942 to January 1946. He attained the rank of Sergeant and served in Graves Registration Service. Upon Jimmy's honorable discharge from the service, he returned to Braidwood to work in the family funeral business.
He married Martha Mae Armstrong January 28, 1950 in his parents' home in Braidwood, which was also the funeral home at the time. Together they served Will and Grundy Counties in the family funeral business until their retirement in April of 1984. In 1958 Jimmy and Martha built a second location of the Patterson Funeral Home in South Wilmington, IL. In 1963 they built a new structure to house the Patterson Funeral Home, Braidwood facility, on the spot previously occupied by the East School. For many years they also operated Patterson Ambulance Service with the help of several local friends until the Braidwood Fire Department started an ambulance service in 1974.
Jimmy was always active and concerned with the civic affairs of the communities he served. Jimmy was a former member of the Will County Funeral Directors Association, the Illinois Funeral Directors Association and the National Funeral Directors Association. He was honored as a 50 year Funeral Director/Embalmer licensee in 1993. He had also served Will County as Deputy Coroner for many years. Jimmy was a 50+ year member and Past Master of Braidwood Masonic Lodge No.704, of which his great grandfather, Alexander Patterson, was the first Worshipful Master and a 50+ year member and Past Patron of the O.E.S. Holly Chapter No. 183, both in Braidwood. He was a Past Commander and 50+ year member of the V.F.W. Post #1749 in South Wilmington and a Past Commander and 50+ year member of the American Legion Post #39 in Braidwood. He was a 50+ year member of the Braidwood Fire Department, of which he served as treasurer for most of that time. He was a 75+ year faithful member of the First Presbyterian Church in Braidwood of which he formerly served as a Trustee and Elder. He was a former second Vice President of the First Savings and Loan Association in Wilmington, a charter member of the Braidwood Recreation Club and a life member of the Disabled American Veterans.
Surviving are his wife, Martha of Braidwood; two sons and daughters-in-law, Jim and Sherry Patterson of Ottawa, IL and Roger and Kathy Patterson of Braidwood; one daughter and son- in-law, Carol and Sam Bissell of Lafeyette, GA; four grandchildren and their spouses, Lisa and Tom Moro, Holli and Tim Washburn, Christopher and Christine Patterson, and Sara and Joshua Foote; two step-grandchildren, Tony (Allison) Crone and Adam Crone; 6 great grandchildren, Ben and Kate Moro, William McArdle, Steven Patterson, and Lucas and Mackenzie Foote; three step great-grandchildren, Alexandria and Isaac Sawyer and Parker Crone; one brother and sister-in-law, Robert and Toni Patterson of Fountain Hills, AZ; brother-in-law, Raymond Favero of Braidwood; and many nieces, nephews, great nieces, and great nephews; and a host of many dear friends.
Preceding him in death were his parents and a sister, Mary Jean Favero.
Funeral services will be at the R.W. Patterson Funeral Homes, Ltd., Braidwood Chapel, Saturday, March 15, at 11:00 a.m. with Rev. Jan Chandler officiating. Interment with full military honors will follow at the Oakwood Cemetery in Wilmington, IL. The visitation will be Friday, March 14, from 2-8 p.m.
Memorial gifts in his name may be directed to the First Presbyterian Church in Braidwood, the Braidwood Fire Department, Santas Helpers, or the Activity Department at Heritage Health in Dwight.
To view his video tribute and to send online condolences, log on to rwpattersonfuneralhomes.com.
Published in Morris Daily Herald on Mar. 13, 2014