Honoring Maj. Clifford L Patterson, JR
As a participant in D.Challener Roe's 2996 memorial to the 2996 victims of 9/11, I am honored to introduce my readers to Major Clifford L. Patterson, Jr of Alexandria, VA. Maj. Patterson was killed at the Pentagon, where he worked as budget officer for the Resource Management division. The Department of Defense reported a total of 125 service members, employees and contract workers died in the September 11 attack on the Pentagon building.
I didn't know Major Patterson. All that I know about him was gleaned from the many tributes to him written by coworkers, family, and friends on the various 9/11 Memorial sites. From my reading it was obvious that Maj. Patterson was much loved and respected by his fellow army buddies. He had friends back from the ROTC at Howard University who posted what an outstanding leader he was, what a great sense of honor he felt in participating in the Army ROTC whilst attending Howard as an honors student.
Other people conveyed the love he had for his wife Tamatha and his two young sons Cody and Leon. One such note was from a day care teacher who said that Maj. Patterson was a very friendly and talkative guy who loved to laugh and share funny stories about his kids. It was apparent that he was not only a great and supportive husband to his wife, who is also in the Army, but that he was an active participant in raising his boys.
Many of the tributes came from people who reported to Maj. Patterson in his various guises as an officer. One fellow wrote how he was from Florida and was freezing in the Kentucky cold (lucky he wasn't stationed in Alaska, huh?) when Maj. Patterson recommended that he drink a cup of coffee, and then afterwards to him to buck up. The soldier said he would never forget how caring Maj. Patterson was as he told him to stop whinging and get with the program.
The only photo I could find of Maj. Patterson was his official Army photo, but I wish I could have found more. I feel like I want to see that smile and hear that laugh that so many people had written about. But all I have is the official photo, and the official record of his life, which I've included below.
Maj. Patterson was a Distinguished Military Graduate from Howard University in 1991 and was commissioned as a second lieutenant in the infantry. His assignments included Bradley platoon leader, Scout platoon leader and company executive officer for 1st Battalion, 9th Cavalry, and Battalion S-4 for 1st Battalion, 502nd Infantry; commander, Charlie and Headquarters companies, 1-502nd Infantry Regiment, Fort Campbell, KY. His awards include the Meritorious Service Medal, Army Staff Badge, Army Commendation Medal, Army Achievement Medal with two Oak Leaf Clusters, Southwest Asia Service Medal, National Defense Service Medal, Expert Infantryman Badge, Pathfinder Badge and Parachutist and Air Assault badges. He was assigned to the Office of the Administrative Assistant to the Secretary of The Army at the Pentagon. He served in The Army for 11 years.
Maj. Patterson was the son of Clifford L Patterson of Wheaton, MD and Sandra W. Patterson of Silver Spring, MD. He was the brother of Renee Patterson of Laurel, MD., Tanya Patterson of Fairfax, VA., and Miranda Steele of Suitland, Md.
He was laid to rest in Section 64 of Arlington National Cemetary in the shadow of the Pentagon. Survivors include his wife, Capt. Tamatha Patterson, and sons Leon and Cody. We will not forget him.
To view additional memorials, go here for the complete list.
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