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Hospitality Committee gives flowers to Patterson, 99

Gigi Tinsley | 12/19/2013, 9 a.m.
Born in Miami on Feb. 7, 1914, Dorothy Patterson will be 100 years-old on Feb. 5, 2014. She is the ...
Dorothy Patterson

Born in Miami on Feb. 7, 1914, Dorothy Patterson will be 100 years-old on Feb. 5, 2014. She is the only child of the late Lillian and Timothy Farrington. Though Dorothy, at birth weighted twelve and one-half pounds, today at 99, “She has a nice little body shape and has a bundle of energy, a good mind, and loves to dance.,” Dr. Dory Lingo, the Hospitality Ministry President of the Church of the Open Door U.C.C. said. The same church where Patterson is a member of.

Patterson’s grandparents were the late Rachel and Thomas Rolle. They were the parents of seven boys and one girl. That girl was Patterson’s mother, Lillian. The family moved around frequently because her father was a seaman. When Dorothy grew up, she went to live with her aunt and uncle in New York and attended City College there for three years. She returned to Miami to care for an Uncle Ivan Rolle until he died at the age of 105.

It was in Miami that she met and married her only boyfriend, Asa Patterson. They adopted her uncle’s daughter Christel who died as a young woman on a plane trip from Miami to Bimini. She left a son, Christian, whom Dorothy raised as well. When Christian was a young adult, he died in a tragic death and left two sons.

Patterson credits her mother with introducing her to the Christian faith. In 1973, after attending several methodist and baptist churches, she was invited to attend the Church of the Open Door by Rev. Dr. Curtis McDowell, whom she met at an event at Church-by-the Sea. She has been an active member ever since. Patterson speaks fondly of special people in her life and among them are several “heart strings” at the Open Door.

Born into a family of musical talent, music is very important to Patterson.

Two of her uncles, who currently reside in England, are professional musicians. She spoke of the wonderful voice of Bonita North who recently song her favorite song , How Great Thou Art. “I have already requested her t sing at my funeral,” Patterson said. “She sings like an angel, soft and gentle.”

“Patterson thanks God for her good health and reports she occasionally takes an aspirin,” Lingo said. “She wakes up in the morning thinking she can jump out of bed like a 16-year-old only to discover she is 99 and not 16. Only recently, he doctor gave her medication for a minor problem.”

Patterson has a huge collection of angel figurines and her favorite color is purple. She has a great admiration for President Obama said Lingo and is happy to have seen the election of an African American President. She shares her home with her nephew, Kelson.

At 99 years of age, Patterson is the oldest member of the church of the Open Door. “She still sings in the Chancel Choir, reads the scripture during service when requested to do so and is a bright, bouncy, cheerful lady who speaks her mind, Lingo added. “Pastor Willis has named her ‘Mother of the Church.’”

“The Lord has been good to me,” Patterson said. “I’ve lived a good life. When my time comes, I’ll be ready, but I have to say, I don’t feel my age.”