Walter McKinley Patterson, 87, of Vinton, VA passed away, peacefully, in his sleep on January 8, 2014. “Pat” was loved by all who knew him and never met a stranger. He was a true nobleman, honoring his wife and children with his dedication and unending support. Born on January 22, 1926 in Greenville, North Carolina to Mazie Lee Rakes-Patterson and William McKinley Patterson he was the third of four children (William, Nancy and Robert are his siblings). Pat was a tremendous athlete (football, tennis, baseball and track) earning a starting position on the Shrine Bowl Team during his high school football career. Pat also enjoyed pursuing his football talents at the college level playing for both Wake Forest and Atlantic Christian College. He earned his B.A. from Atlantic Christian College, a M.A. from East Carolina and his Ed.S. from Vanderbilt University.
Pat proudly served our country as a member of the Army Air Corps and had an opportunity to travel the world while working for the Department of Defense as a school teacher and administrator in Europe. He met his wife, Naida J. Treadway in 1957 and they were married in March of 1958. Upon their return to the U.S., Pat and Naida pursued teaching and administrative careers in the Chicago area. They have two children (Angeline and Patrick) who they showered with love, support and guidance. Pat retired from school administration with District 41 in Glen Ellyn, Illinois. Since his retirement in 1989 Pat and Naida have enjoyed their travels throughout the Midwest and South visiting family and friends. Some of his fondest memories in recent years are those of time spent at Smith Mountain Lake with Naida, Patrick and his family Annette, Elizabeth, Emma and Catalina. The love Pat has for his family is unmatched. He is the greatest husband, father and friend we could have ever prayed for.
Pat is survived by Naida, his wife of 55 years, his son Patrick, his daughter-in-law, Annette, and the “three reasons” he “woke up every day”, the absolute loves of his life; his granddaughters Elizabeth, Emma and Catalina. Since his move to Vinton, Pat has enjoyed spending time with his brother Robert (Bobby) and his wife, Jeanette. A baseball game with Patrick, Bobby and Jeanette at William Byrd High School shortly after his move to Virginia in 2008 was often quoted to be “one of the best times I’ve had”.
Pat was preceded in death by his parents (William and Mazie), his brother (William), sister (Nancy) and his loving daughter (Angeline).
A Celebration of Life for Pat will be held in July at Smith Mountain Lake. All friends and family are welcome to attend. In lieu of flowers please consider a charitable contribution to The Advancement Foundation, 301 South Pollard Street, Vinton, VA. 24179. Arrangements by Oakey’s Roanoke Chapel and Crematory (540-982-2100), www.oakeys.com