In Memory of

J. Donald Patterson

August 25, 1912 - July 20, 2011
John Donald Patterson, 98, of Cherokee, passed away Wednesday, July, 20, 2011 at the Cherokee Villa where he had been a resident for the past 3 years. J. Donald was born August 25, 1912 on the family farm to Nellie Rogers Patterson and John W. Patterson. Donald graduated from Wilson High School and attended Iowa State University for a year and a half. J. Donald and Marjorie Ballinger were united in marriage in November 1944. The newly married couple lived in Grosse Pointe, Michigan where their son, Donald Baer Patterson was born in October 1945. Tragically in April of 1946, Marjorie was killed in a car accident. Following his wife's death, Donald remained in Roseville, Michigan until he moved back to the family farm south of Cherokee in 1952. Donald's great loves after his family, were the family farm and his Beechcraft Bonanza airplane. Donald moved many times back and forth from jobs in Detroit to the farm until 1959 when he moved permanently to Cherokee. During his life Donald: Built a full size glider in high school shop and formed a club to fly it. An article featuring the glider was published in the Cherokee Daily Times in August, 1995. Helped develop the first hydraulic front loader for a farm tractor at Caswell Manufacturing. Built a house in Roseville, Michigan in his off hours. Became a self-taught engineer working in WW II defense plants. Became an instrument rated pilot and a member of the United Flying Octogenarians. Consulted for R. J. Thomas Manufacturing on tooling issues. Enjoyed writing poetry and had letters published in the Wall Street Journal. He is preceded in death by his parents, wife, Marjorie, sister, Irene and brother, Stanley. Donald will be lovingly remembered by his son, Don and daughter-in-law, Karen of Troy, Michigan, granddaughter, Amanda Patterson Dunakin and her husband, Dean of Chicago, grandson, Jeffrey Patterson and his wife, Marissa of Rochester Hills, Michigan. Funeral services will be at 10:30 a.m., Wednesday, August 3, 2011 at the Greenwood Funeral Home, Cherokee. Viewing will be from 6:00 till 8:00 p.m. Tuesday, August 2. Burial will be in West Pilot Cemetery. Please direct memorials to the Cherokee Public Library.
Funeral services will be held at 10:30 A.M. Wednesday, August 3, 2011 at Greenwood Funeral Home in Cherokee.
Family and Friends of J. Donald
Jeffrey Patterson Joe Schleef John Schleef Tim Cronin Amanda Patterson Dunakin
Visitation will begin at noon on Tuesday, August 2, 2011. The family will be present from 6:00-8:00 P.M. Tuessday night at Greenwood Funeral Home in Cherokee.
Pilot Cemetery Rural Cherokee, Iowa


Tuesday, August 2, 2011 at 12:00 AM
“To all the Patterson's”
- Hormoz & Azar Alizadeh
Monday, August 1, 2011 at 12:00 AM
“I was sorry to learn that your Dad passed away. It is never easy to say "Good-bye" to those we love. ”
- Jeanne Griffen
Thursday, July 28, 2011 at 12:00 AM
“John Donald will always have a place in my heart. His love of flying was equal to mine and we shared many happy hours in the airplane. He brought many smiles and laughter to my heart. My sympathy to the family....wishing John Donald blue skies and visions of the V-Tail Bonanza!”
- Jane (Walter) Berg
Thursday, July 28, 2011 at 12:00 AM
“Don, Karen and family. Our deepest sympathy to you on the passing of your Dad. It was good to read his obituary and read of the many accomplishments and interests pursued during his life. May you cherish the good memories. In caring sympathy, Don and Mary Ann”
- Donald J. Klimesh
Thursday, July 28, 2011 at 12:00 AM
“Don, Karen, Mandy and Jeff are prayers are with you. Don, the bio was a wonderful tribute to your dad.”
- Bette & Keith
Send Your Condolences
  • logo
  • Cherokee 216 South 2nd Street
    Highway 59 South
    Cherokee, Iowa 51012
    (712) 225-4886
  • Marcus 100 Eagle Avenue
    Marcus, Iowa 51035
    (712) 376-4886