Ronald Alexander Patterson
Feb. 8, 1932 – Jan. 8, 2015
Dad/Poppy was one of 11 children born to Homer and Theresa (nee MacMillan). He was a twin and was born on the family farm in Winchester Springs on Feb. 8, 1932. The family later moved to a larger dairy farm outside of Winchester that would become the homestead. This is where Dad spent his youth. With so many siblings, there was no lack of chores to be done, and mischief to stir up. As kids, we loved to hear tales of his younger years. They were always a source of laughter around the dinner table with Dad and his siblings.
Dad left the farm at a young age. With no formal education, but a strong will and determination, he successfully built a career as a gas fitter, working for a natural gas company for 35 years. With many awards for customer service and safety, he finally retired in 1997. This gave him more time to spend with his family, travelling to visit nieces, nephews, brothers, and sisters, and attending any of his grandchildren’s many activities.
He also joined the church choir, the community choir, and the Cardinal Red Birds where he was able to combine his love of music with his flair for performing, bringing smiles and laughter to their many audiences.
Always a storyteller, he loved to share a joke, a poem, a song, or some quirky saying no matter the company or the occasion. His quick wit and great sense of humour were his trademarks, and left a lasting impression on everyone who knew him.
Over the days that followed his passing, it seemed that anyone the family spoke with had a funny story to share with us. This was a true testament to how his personality touched others – what a blessing for us as we faced those difficult days. These are strong traits that have fortunately been inherited or simply instilled in his children and grandchildren.
He married the love of his life, Elaine Christie, at just 18. Within a year, they had their first child. Some would say it was all too soon, that they were too young. However, they overcame the trials they faced to build a loving home for their four children, and a relationship that remained deeply committed to each other for 63 years. They lived in several small communities in the area, but settled in Cardinal, and remained there for 52 years. When Mom passed away in April of 2014, life without “his young bride” was nearly unbearable. He received the diagnosis of cancer in October, and it seemed his desire to be reunited with Mom in the next life quickly outweighed his need for this one.
Whether you knew him as Ronnie, Uncle Ronnie, the gas man, the glass man, neighbour, co-worker, or friend, you have a piece of him to carry with you always. Remember him with a smile or share a story, which would make him proud.