JOPLIN, Mo. —
An unforgettable father, son, brother and friend, Joel Patterson recently passed away at his home in Leawood, Kan. He was 59. Joel was a proud native of Joplin, the son of the late James E. and Betty L. Patterson. He excelled in scouting and student leadership, earning his Eagle Scout Award and graduating at the top of his class from Parkwood High School in 1971. He later received his bachelor's and master's degrees from Missouri Southern State College and the University of Missouri-Kansas City. He taught communications at UMKC before joining the faculty at DeVry University. He remained at DeVry for nearly 25 years where he concluded his career as a senior professor. As notable as his academic career were his musical talents and extensive travels. Joel was an accomplished musician. He explored the world where his adventures took him throughout five continents. Both inspired his writings and artistic interests. Joel will be most fondly remembered, though, for his remarkable creativity, brilliance and wit. These are the things that will define his legacy. These are the things that will inspire the reflections and recollections that many will share about him for years to come. His family includes his wife, Yan and daughter, Jet; his sisters, Vicki Patterson, of Colorado Springs, and Penny Rogers, of Joplin; and his brother, Todd Patterson, of both Kansas City and Washington, D.C. A private memorial service will be held in his honor.