LT. COL. (Ret.) Joseph C. Pate
COLUMBIA, SC-- Joseph Chapman Pate retired decorated Army
and Navy veteran
, passed away on Friday, April 19, 2013, in Columbia, SC. Joseph was born in Birmingham, AL on April 14, 1926, to the late Beulah Simmons and Zanie Conroe Pate.
He joined the Navy as a 17 year old to fight for his country during World War II
. Upon his return, he graduated from Wofford College in Spartanburg, SC where he joined the Army ROTC.
He was an accomplished student athlete at Wofford, earning letters in football, basketball and golf. He was a member of the famous Wofford 49ers which defeated Auburn University. He loved his Alma Mater and attended Homecoming and the 50 Year Club dinners until he physically could not do so. He also earned a Master's Degree in Education from the University of Southern Mississippi.
His military career was long and honorable. In addition to his service in the Navy during World War II, he served with the Army in the Korean War
and the Vietnam War. He was highly decorated with several medals, including multiple Bronze Stars and the Purple Heart. During peace time, he served as a Lt. Colonel at Fort Jackson and was responsible for the development of Weston Lake, the recreational lake and park system on Fort Jackson in Columbia, SC. It continues to be ranked as the number 1 outdoor recreational facility in the U.S. Army. He loved the Army and served until his retirement in 1970. After retiring from the Army, he worked for the South Carolina Department of Education until his final retirement in 1991.
He loved all sports, especially football. While stationed in Germany, he was the commanding officer in charge of all U.S. Military Sports. He coached the Hannau Hawks to victory in the Military School Football Championship. Once home in South Carolina, he was a high school football official for 35 years, and in 2000 was inducted into the South Carolina High School Football Officials Hall of Fame.
Colonel Pate was predeceased by his beloved wife, Miriam Durham Pate; his sister, Katherine Pate Stokes; and brother, Conroe Donald Pate.
He is survived by his children, Michael Chapman Pate, Timothy Burrell Pate, Cheryl Pate Feagin (Robert Feagin) and Dr. Andrew Joseph Pate (Margarita Morales Pate), as well as six grandchildren, James Feagin, John Feagin, Joshua Feagin, Stephanie Amalia Burgart (Dennis), Alexandra Jordan Pate and Olivia Marie Pate.
The family wishes to thank everyone who loved Joe, including his nephews, nieces and other family members and loved ones. He leaves behind a legacy of honor and fidelity to God, Country and Family.
Memorials may be made to the Wofford Terrier Club, 429 N. Church Street, Spartanburg, SC 29303.
Visitation will be held at Asbury United Methodist Church, 1005 Asbury Drive, Columbia, SC 29209 from 1:00-2:30pm on Tuesday, April 23, 2013. The service will be held following the visitation at 2:30pm in the sanctuary. Interment with full military honors will follow in Greenlawn Memorial Park.
Online condolences may be sent to www.greenlawn-columbia.com