This website is dedicated with all the enthusiasm we can muster to a man that genuinely affected our lives.  You would be hard pressed to find a person that was as astoundingly faithful and full of life than the man Patrick L. Townsend.

First and foremost we encourage you to share any stories, thoughts, memories in the “reply” space provided below. The link for “arrangements” currently has all the viewing and funeral schedules, mom’s and Brady’s eulogies, and a video of the funeral services. Your thoughts and words are really important, so please share them for Patrick’s ecosystem of love to experience.

Have a longer story or tall tale to tell about dad? Want to read some? Select this: Longer Stories & Tall Tales. Some of the comments have already been moved to that section, so be sure to check the Stories link above as well.

82 Responses to Dedication

  1. Dan Carpenter says:

    Stopping in today, Sept 7 to say hi to Patrick, my friend, mentor, and partner in many leadership discussions. I am a better person and leader through my association with Pat. I have two Modelo Negras in the fridge…
    Love always,

  2. Rebeca says:

    Texas: When Michael and I visited Patrick in Texas, I was treated like royalty. He insisted I sleep in the master bedroom while he relegated both himself and Michael to the living room. He got the air mattress and Michael got the couch. He made delicious peach cobbler and joked and laughed a lot. I was in awe of Michael and wondered if he would grow up to have eyebrows like his father.

    September 11: Michael and I were putting up a Tape Art mural in the early part of the morning in a high school in Fort Worth, Texas. We heard the events of the day unfold in real time from the radio in the Principal’s office. I was twenty years old and had never visited the World Trade Center. So, the gripping fear for me began with the planes. I felt like the amount of planes being hijacked was endless. Michael started crying which stunned me. I moved to hug him and he pushed me away. I don’t believe he even saw me. Sometime later we reunited with Patrick. I remember phone calls to my family and being glued to the television. Patrick was calm, reassuring, and made me feel better. I rewrote this sentence a bunch and it just doesn’t deliver. I will just have to rely on the collective experience from that day and say that this man with his experience and wisdom shaped my understanding of the tragedy and did indeed help me feel better. My heart swells with gratitude to him for this.

    Buffy: I spent the past Spring watching Buffy The Vampire Slayer for the first time. I remembered that Patrick and Joan were big fans and I also remember that Patrick had a life size cardboard cut-out of Buffy in his office in Texas. This seems like a detail that I must have made up but I swear I saw it there. Buffy is such an incredible show!!! I watched season after season and then had to read the comics to continue the story.

    Having had the privilege and honor of meeting both sets of Grandparents and one Aunt Dorothy, I was deeply saddened by Patrick’s passing. I expected him to live a long life. It’s strange to have that expectation for anyone. I understand that a long life is not necessarily a full life and that Patrick had a full life with a tremendous amount of love. There was such an abundance of love in the Townsend family that a little bit of it has stayed with me.

    For this I am grateful.

  3. Susan Christenson Knaup says:

    Pat and Joan were our neighbors in Vista, Ca. I babysat Michael for a period of time. I am so sorry to see that Pat passed away. It looks like he lived a very full life. I would like to get in touch with Joan somehow- in order to see how she is doing and let her know how I am doing.

  4. Stephen Bracken says:

    Today, July 2, 2011, was the day I learned of the passing of my friend and mentor, Major Patrick L. Townsend. This was because the mention of his death (although not the actual date) was in the O’Callaghan newsetter from the Holy Cross NROTC unit. Pat was the Marine Officer Instructor for three of my four years at HC and I always liked and admired him. In fact he was revered by many. This was a man who made “Amphibious Warfare Review” so popular that it was routinely oversubscribed by non-NROTC students. The motley crew of football and rugby and hockey players taking that course (and another taught by Pat) got into the course thinking it would be easy. In fact, his lectures were riveting and I found myself very interested in the history of the Marine Corps and of America. Other students really got into the courses as well, because he made it fun to learn. He challenged us to write a paper entitled, “America’s Next War.” I think we all probably struck out on picking what would be next, since Grenada popped up after that, but it was a thought-provoking exercise. Speaking of provocation, Pat became a prolific writer in the Marine Corps Gazette. He and another senior Marine officer, Gordon Batchellor, were critical of some of the practices of the Marines. In the end, both had a lot to say and their observations rang true. I will never forget an article he wrote about leadership when he criticized a style he called “MBI” or management by intimidation. This was never Major Townsend’s style, that’s for sure. I was fortunate to cross paths with Pat several times after I was commissioned. In fact we were both in the 9th Marine Corps recruiting district from 1982-1983 – Pat at the HQS in Kansas and me in Minneapolis as the OPSO. I enjoyed my visits to Kansas as I got to spend additional quality time with Pat and Joan. I was also fortunate that they were able to attend my wedding to Maura in 1985 (26 years this year and going strong). I am sorry, Joan, that I did not learn of Pat’s death until today. Others will probably learn the same way I did. I think of him often and more important, incorporate many of the leadership traits into my personal style as a senior foreign service officer. You can find me these days at the U.S. Embassy in Rabat, Morocco – now 23 years with the State Department. Steve Bracken

  5. Tom Griggs says:

    I was not a very good Marine. Still, the Corps allowed me stick around for a couple of decades, even though I never scored well on the physical fitness test, for example, and my leadership skills were dubious at best. Nevertheless, Pat Townsend, who did possess great leadership skills, always treated me with utmost respect. He was a boss, mentor and leader, who treated everyone respectfully. He was an outstanding man.

    When I was getting ready to move on to another duty station, Pat said he was putting me in for the Navy Achievement Medal for a job well done at 9th Marine Corps District headquarters. I offered that I hadn’t accomplished anything extraordinary and that he shouldn’t write a Navy Achievement citation for me. His concern, then, was to respect my wishes, and once again, he showed me nothing but respect. He’d simply wanted to take good care of one of his Marines, but if I didn’t think I deserved the NAM, he said, he understood that. He understood everything, it seemed. And he was a really good guy.

    Godspeed, Pat. I salute you, sir.

    Tom Griggs
    GySgt., USMC (Retired)

  6. Ann & Thad Sandford says:

    Joan and family. I haven’t been able to write anything until now because I have been in denial that he is gone. How can such a strong presence be stilled so silently, so quickly, so unretrieveably. It has been almost three months since your call, Joan. I know you were in shock. I watched you all function on automatic pilot, doing the things that had to be done in the order that they had to done. The visitation hours at the funeral home were long but important to be gotten through. The community response was so whole-hearted. He had made an impact. What a wonderful legacy for Michael and Brady, Tracey and the little girls. The military service was so beautifully done and do deserved. I can’t imagine a more suitable setting for his final resting place. You did everything in such a gracious manner. I can just imagine Patrick standing there in amazement at all the fuss, for although he loved ceremony, it was never about him. He was the “jolly green giant”, ready to salute but never expecting to be saluted.

    My first memory of him, as you know, was knocking at our back door in Middletown, RI, asking for glue. My response, after looking at the jumbled mess of stuff in my arms, was no. His face lit up, and with a bit grin, he said, “okay, thanks”, and walked away. It was the beginning of our long friendship. We shared meals, babysitting, Navy Choristers, wine, furniture refinishing, carpooling, anniveraries, birthdays, and those 9 Thanksgivings in 12 year, joys when our children did well, some aggravations, sightseeing, and the special connection that you, Joan, and I shared, our ESP. Little did we know that finally sharing a wonderful trip to Turkey this year would bring us full circle as a foursome. I don’t think that even had we known then what was to come that the trip could have been any better. Thank God we have it to remember too.

    It may take a while for me to leave something here for the little girls but I will get to it eventually. We loved Patrick and will miss him greatly, but will be forever grateful that for 35 years he was part of our lives. You and your family will always be special to us. That will never change.

    Ann & Thad

  7. Jackie Black says:

    Joan and Family:

    Today I received your note and am profoundly sad for Pat’s passing. Pat was one of my most favorite guys and when you all moved from Texas, I missed you both so very much.
    I will never forget the day I met you all at the Texas house. You had been walking by every day or so and then the For Sale sign went up. You called, I met you all there, we walked through and Pat said, after only about 15 minutes in the house, ‘We’ll take it”–in the back of my head, I said “Really???–no one does that..there must be something wrong with this guy, he likes to play jokes on realtors…”, as it turns out, he liked joking just about everything. I loved his blustery laugh…How every blessed I was by your trust, friendship and love. I was glad you all got to move back home, but it left a little hole in my life. You all were missed then and now.

  8. Dr John Bank says:

    A few years ago I was invited from London to address the International Asian Quality Circle Convention in Bali, Indonesia. I was happy to accept the invitation but suggested, in the manner of John the Baptist, that one greater than I should be invited to speak to the conference–Patrick Townsend— and he also accepted the invitation to be a keynote speaker on two conditions 1. that the organizers pay for his air fare upfront and 2. that he be able to get home in time for Thanksgiving Day dinner with his wife Joan and his two sons Michael and Brady and their partners and daughters. To accommodate Pat’s second objective I gave him my slot at start of the convention and took his slot at the closing. He was a tremendous keynote speaker and won, as usual, a standing ovation for his wise and inspirational words on quality from several thousand Pacific Rim colleagues. He made it back home from Bali at noon on that Thanksgiving Day. The experience encapsulated Pat’s unshakable commitment to proclaiming quality, his engaging personality as a friend, and his tremendous love of family life. Shakespeare summed him up: “His life was gentle and the elements so mixed in him that nature might stand up and say to all the world: ‘This was a man.'”
    Dr. John Bank, London, England

  9. Nancy Chenault Greenwaldt says:

    I cannot tell you the sorrow I felt when I opened the pre Xmas letter from you, Joan. A sense of loss that cannot compare to yours. I have loved you both for what….36 yrs. We shared some fun times. I know you are hurting and that it will take time for the hurt to still to a dull throb. I do not have your phone # but would like very much to hear your voice. You have had a heck of a year and my heart goes out to you.’

  10. Tom and Gini Gnibus says:

    Dear Joan and family,

    Gini and I were saddened to learn of Pat’s passing a few days ago. Our thoughts and prayers are with all of you.

    With deepest sympathy,
    Tom and Gini

  11. Ron DeLaura says:

    Certainly first both Barb and my deepest condolences to you Joan and the family who mostly do not know us. I cannot believe you were in Glendora and didn’t call, would have been great to see you all.
    Too many great men are leaving this earth too soon, and certainly Patrick is one of those. We had great times with you both in Monterey, but what I remember most is Pat’s comsumate drive to excellence, he was always my top student doing everything very well and then doing more.

  12. Pat Maloney says:

    Joan, my heart goes out to you and your family. Pat will surely be missed.
    Pat and I met at the Defense Information School where we learned to be paid professional liars, er, I mean, spokesmen for the military. What a joyous three months! I am sure I learned something about public affairs, but what I remember most are the Rug Sucking Parties, Belly Whistlers, Float Trips, learning how to drink like a Canadian, Belly Dance lessons and lying convincingly to the Indiannapolis Public Library about why we needed to check out the record of the Col Bogey (River Kwai) March. We told him we were protocol officers from Ft. Ben and needed it because some big whig general from some made up British regiment was coming and that was their regimental march. I guess we did learn something from DINFOS after all. Pat will reign supreme in my all time list of favorite characters!

  13. Bill Lawrence says:

    Pat and I were plankholders in an organization at Camp Pendleton from 1971-1973. The founding of Marine Corps Tactical Systems Support Activity was comprised of 14 Marine Corps officers, each coming from a different discipline and each having at least a Master’s Degree. MCTSSA was tasked with the initial effort to see what effect computers might have on the modern battlefield. It was a very highbrow organization and we learned a lot (not sure how much good we did the Marine Corps). Pat and I were Captains at the time and the most junior of all the officers there. We got a kick telling those who asked what we did that we were “in the MTACCS/MIFASS division of MCTSSA” — the ultimate acronym machine.

    One short story. A Hollywood quiz show called “Split Second” came to Camp Pendleton to pick some future contestants. I planned to go, but for some long-forgotten reason, didn’t. Pat did. He went on the show and won $18,000 and a new Corvette. Somewhere there are still videos of Pat on Split Second, I am sure. (I went the next month, ended up on 3 different shows, and did fairly well, but Pat sure blazed the way. The deal with the car was that, after you won the initial round, you could try to win the bonus round, then try to win a car. You were given one key which would start one of the 5 cars lined up before you. If you picked the right car and it started, the car was yours. I remember Pat saying that, after he won the game and the bonus round (winning the $18,000), he stood around during the commercial break waiting to try to win the car. He heard a little voice behind the curtain say “I bet he picks the Corvette, and I bet it starts”. Now, those of you reading this please understand: it has been almost 40 years since this happened and I’ve told this story so often I’ve almost come to believe that it might even be true.

    The pictures from the 70s recall a pleasant time in a wonderful organization peopled by great folks. The Marine Corps Balls that Pat and Joanie attended there (and Elaine and I attended there) were among the best in my 28 years in the Marine Corps. And, Joanie, you and Pat were standouts among standouts.

    Joannie (and kids), Elaine and I grieve with you. But Pat leaves a rich heritage and will never be truly gone as long as generations continue to be affected by the teachings he has left for us. And, for those of us who have a deep faith in God, we believe that death really is just a thin veil that we all will pierce, leading to a richer, fuller eternity.

    Semper Fi ~~ William S Lawrence, Colonel, USMC (Retired)

  14. Elaine & Paul says:

    Our thoughts are with you all. Pat was an amazing person, and the life you all built together is a tribute to that. Please be well, and find comfort in the strength of your family.

  15. KM Walker says:

    I first met Pat through a phone conversation about leadership and love. He was a passionate author and an inspiring gentleman to speak with. I regret that I was never able to share his joy in person, but I am grateful for having known him. I give my best to his family.
    Semper Fidelis

  16. Mary says:

    I found a dedication to Pat in the Nolan newsletter(an insurance industry publication). I had never met him and was so intrigued by the write up (Pat shared many qualities with my Dad, a retired Army officer), that I came here to learn more about him. What a blessing he was to so many lives. My sympathies to his family and friends on such a tremendous loss. These words from Emily Dickinson may be of comfort:

    This world is not conclusion
    A sequel lies beyond
    Invisible as music
    As positive as sound

  17. Dan Carpenter says:

    This is a quote that I have used at the bottom of my emails from time to time, more as a guide and desire than a belief I would ever attain it. However, I do believe Patrick personified it more than anyone else I know, and I know a lot of people. I think if you start at the bottom of these dedications read your way to the top you will agree.

    “He has achieved success who has lived well, laughed often and loved much; who has gained the respect of intelligent men and the love of little children; who has filled his niche and accomplished his task; who has left the world better than he found it, whether by an improved poppy, a perfect poem, or a rescued soul; who has never lacked appreciation of earth’s beauty or failed to express it; who has always looked for the best in others and given them the best he had; whose life was an inspiration; whose memory a benediction.”
    – Bessie Stanley, 1905

  18. Paige says:

    I only met him once but I’ll always remember how he just put his granddaughter in my lap, it was really funny to me how swiftly he just gave this little human to me and I was sort of in awe because I hadn’t been around too many babies in my life! He was very nice to me and I liked him almost immediately.

  19. Col Chuck Delair (Ret) says:

    Sorry to hear about Pat. I worked with him at the 9th District 81-84. What a great guy…always a smile on his face and never seemed stressed. Awesome wit and sense of humor. Everyone at the HQ enjoyed him and were blessed just by knowing him. What fond memories I have of the “Public Relations” branch and its POSITIVE affect on the rest of the HQ.
    My thoughts and prayers go out to his family.

  20. David Garner says:

    When Chuck Spadafora emailed me that Pat had unexpectedly died, I was shocked beyond words – the tragic news took my breath away. After several years, Pat and I had just reconnected in August. Chuck, Pat, Ed Dwyer, and I roomed together at Fort Sill for a year. Pat was actually my roommate – in those days, guys sharing rooms together was no big thing! Pat, Ed, and I had attended Catholic universities – Pat, Marquette; Ed and I Notre Dame, and Chuck, the Naval Academy; we were a good foursome, though I was the odd-man out – I was junior to them by a year and they were Gunnery instructors, while I was a ‘lowly’ Tactics instructor – always second team in the eyes of the Gunnery Department! All that has been written about Pat below is undoubtedly true, but I would also add ‘loud’ and often, especially to opposing ball players at Fort Sill, whether football or baseball, very obnoxious! He prided himself in getting under the opponents’ skin. But there were other sides to Pat as well – he taught Religious Education (then, CCD) to the youth of St Barbara parish … and took that very seriously. Of course, being the quick study that he always was, he needed minimum preparation time. He was hard on both the Marine and Army lieutenants he taught, because he knew that if they didn’t learn, they could end up killing folks in Vietnam (the wrong ones) … I think he put the fear of God into them … and with his booming voice, that was easy for him to do! He didn’t suffer fools well. We had some good times in Lawton/Fort Sill and was surprised at how well behaved he was in West Covina the days before his marriage to Joan … obviously, she has been the key to his later success in life! As many have mentioned, Pat loved life and lived it to the fullest. He was as smart as they come and, obviously, turned out to be a wonderful ‘teacher’ throughout his life.

    God bless you Joan and family; there is a painful void in your lives that can never be filled. However, I hope that knowing that so many loved and respected Pat will in some small way help in your grief.

    Semper Fi , Dave

  21. BJ Powell says:

    Though I was not fortunate enough to have known Pat for very long, I was immediately touched by his kindness and open, friendly spirit. On the very first day I met him he teased me, explaining that it would be alright if I didn’t see “Macbeth” but I would really be missing out if I didn’t see his performance in “Much Ado”. I knew then that my year at Holy Cross was going to be full of fun. I can’t think of the Holy Cross family without seeing Pat’s welcoming smile.

    My prayers and thoughts are with you Joan, Michael and the wonderful rest of the family who I have not yet had the good fortune to meet (but I have heard much about).


  22. Mike McDonald says:

    It’s hard to describe the void in your life when you lose a best friend of more than 40 years. I first met Pat & Joanie when I was sent to Ft. Sill, OK to learn how to be an artilleryman. I didn’t realize what an effect Pat would have on my life, both in the Marines and after. As part of a cadre commanded by Pat, I spent a year in Vietnam with him and learned the true meaning of leadership. He respected everyone, regardless of rank, and treated everyone with dignity. He would listen to any complaint or idea, regardless of the source. When he told you he would follow up and get back to you, he would. He was fair in all his dealings and did the small things that made him such a great leader. Pat was a Class Act in whatever he did throughout all the years we were together. He taught me and many others that you did not just learn something and do it, you did it to a high degree of excellence. That was his mantra. I have never known anyone so well versed in anything, not only in life, but in how to enjoy life. The one exception to that was his taste in beer. I never could understand how he could like Pabst Blue Ribbon!
    Pat had so many stories that he could keep you entertained for hours, and you never became bored. We had pretty much the same sense of humor which probably helped bring us together as well as a lot of the same interests. In a bunker in Vietnam, we once played Cribbage for a penny a point to 20,000 points. He took me for 20 cents, and you would have thought he had won $20,000. Being Pat, he never once rubbed it in, although he did offer to teach me how to play the game.
    Rita and I were so proud that Pat stood up for me at our wedding, and I am proud to be Michael’s Godfather. We will truly miss the Big Guy, his infectious laugh, his devilish sense of humor, and his kind and loving soul. May God keep you close, and continue to watch over your lovely wife and family. Semper Fi my friend.

  23. Dick Young says:

    I recall Pat’s great zeal for quality in everything and a can do attitude. An example: The Quality Department distributed a calendar for Paul Revere department’s use with reminders of things to do to deliver quality service. Everyone was mortified when it was discovered there were not one but two September 22nds. Not Pat. He quickly went into high gear and pronounced that it was a day so important we had to have it twice and then developed themed programs for delivery on those days.

  24. David Field says:

    Dear Joan,

    Barbara McCarthy told me of Pat’s passing. Please accept my deepest sympathy.

    Pat and I car pooled together when I taught at Holy Cross in the 70’s. Of my memories of Holy Cross, my getting to know Pat and the fun times we had are among my fondest. I will always remember Pat as a good man, devoted to his family and a natural leader with a great sense of humor. I always smiled and was pleased to read of Pat’s successes over the years.

  25. Fred Misilo says:

    Pat – a friend, a teacher, and a leader.

    I first learned of Pat through his writings on leadership and management. His lessons have continued to be great value to me. However, I became a real fan of Pat when a I and some others in Holden worked with him on the School Building Committee. I saw him at work in meetings which he chaired firmly, yet fairly; I saw him present at hearings and handle critical questions with tremendous grace and confidence and I knew him as a friend and colleague. A telling moment in my understanding and appreciation of Pat came after an unexpected loss of an over-ride vote for a modest tax increase to continue, as I remember it, some repairs in an existing school. Those of us in the “pro-school” camp were shocked. If the voters wouldn’t support a modest tax increase to repair an existing school, a large over-ride to build two new schools and to renovate a third seemed impossible. But not to Pat. Within a week, I met with him. The unexpected loss of the vote had increased his resolve to turn the political climate on the school issue. He took it upon himself to initiate donations to a PAC that published very persuasive educational materials on the need for new elementary schools in Holden. He collaborated with many, led the charge in endless hearings and was resolute in his passion. We could feel the tide turn. I remember early one morning working on a sign-stand out with him at the corner of Chapel Street and Shrewsbury Street, in front of what is now the vet clinic. We were getting “thumbs up” signals, waves and honks. I can still remember Pat’s face that morning whcn he looked at me with that wide, toothy grin of his and said, “We’re going to win this thing.” And win we did. As a result, two brand new elementary schools were built and a third was substantially renovated. That win was the result of collaborative efforts of many, many people. But those of us who were there in the trenches know the indispensable role Pat played in getting a successful vote. After the win and during the early building phase for the Mayo School, Pat invited me to his house along with others to watch a video of the site being cleared. The excitement Pat exuded when watching the trees come down to make way for the new school was nothing short of a youngster opening presents on Christmas morning.

    On a personal level, Pat was just wicked fun to be around. I felt better everytime I was in his presence. I treasure those memories. One time I recall was when Joan was on a trip. Pat, Sandy and I had Chinese take-out on my deck for dinner. After dinner, Pat and I sat out there for hours talking about family, politics, life. The last time I saw Pat was in Stop and Shop earlier this year with my daughter, Jessica, who is now in college. I introduced Pat to Jessica as “the Man who made sure you had a new elementary school when you were in first grade’. In fact, Jessica attended Mayo when it opened.

    As the shock and pain of the sudden loss of this thoroughly wonderful man fades, the memory of his optimism, intelligence, courage and passion will continue for those who had the privilege of knowing him. I was privileged to call him my friend.

    Fred Misilo

  26. Lynn Kremer says:

    Dearest Joan, Michael, Brady, Tracy and children,
    All of your friends in Bali have been thinking about you and praying for you in various temples. We hope you have been able to feel our prayers. We were so very saddened to hear of Pat’s passing. He has been a friend to all of us and it is impossible too imagine the Department of Theatre without his presence. There was no job too small for Pat to assist us in, be that running out to Staples to get us the right the folder for a presentation, dragging bundles of drinks and supplies to the Pit or 481, baking cookies for a reception or to leave in the green room, or cleaning up the mess after the cast party or a gamelan performance. We can all recall the numerous times we would be at a loss of how to proceed and Joan would say, “let me call Pat and……..(fill in the blank).” He would then appear, as if by magic, with a huge grin and whatever was needed to move the project along. Pat’s smile and laugh were infectious. In our talks about him, none of us can remember a time when he was not smiling or telling a wild story about……(fill in the blank). The stories were often long, entertaining, and tangentially connected to the problem at hand. They always helped to lighten the mood. We know this year has to have been one of the hardest ever for the Townsend family. We love you and will continue to pray for your strength and wellbeing. We wish we were geographically closer to you to pass along our wishes and give you big hugs. Love,
    Lynn Kremer
    Iouri Alsov
    I Nyoman Catra
    Desak Made Suarti Laksmi
    I Wayan Dibia
    Ni Made Wiratini
    I Nyoman Cerita
    Ni Made Cerita

  27. Joan,

    I can’t begin to tell you how sorry I am to learn of your loss. I will never forget your kindness and hospitality during my troubled period in Massachusetts–those long weekends of great talk and great food and a lot of drink (much of it great too, though harder to remember). Going on forays to interesting places. Of playing with computers and plotting publishing strategies. And the kids, of course. Pat always treated me like I was a long-lost little brother and I regret that I never had the presence of mind to thank him for it. Or you. I regret, too, that we lost touch somewhere along the way. Oddly, I was in a meeting with Pearl Brazier the day before I got notice of Pat’s death (from Gerry, of course) and meant to ask her how I might contact you guys, but the meeting was long and broke apart suddenly and everyone went their own way too quickly. A lot like too much in life, I guess.

    Anyway, my thoughts are with you and the boys.

  28. John Tata says:


    I am saddened at Pat’s passing, we worked together on the O’Callahan Committee and I had not seen him for many years prior to meeting again last spring.

    Pat had a terrfic recall, a quick wit and as much horse sense as any man I ever knew. It was a pleasure working with him and I shall miss his ideas and his humor. Please accept my condolences at your tragic loss.

    John Tata

  29. Bruce Pifel says:

    If ever I knew a person who was full of life and enjoyed his days so much, it was Pat Townsend, always ready with a comment, analysis, observation on leadership and ethics, or a story, mostly laced with humor, to make a point. He was “deceptively intelligent” and surprised those who did not know him with his perception and “quick study” skills. As sometimes, but too seldom, happens, we, who knew Patrick, are so much richer for that experience and so much poorer that he is no longer with us.

  30. Rosie Toomey says:


    I consider it a pleasure and an honor to have meet both you and Patrick at the reunion this past August in Ohio. My life has been changed by this chance meeting, and I thank you. Please consider Phil and I as friends in comforting you and hope that at some future time we can once again meet to share some more memories.

    I am sorry we were unable to be at the memorial, but we were there in spirit. Here’s hoping that with all those comforting you, you will be able to move on to your next venture

    Many hundreds of young men that Patrick has molded, mentored and inspired are better for his being in their lives, especially my husband.

    I only met you and Patrick for one short weekend, but I consider you both class acts with the ability to make all around you special.

    Although I know you have many friends and family to around you, I, too, would like to be considered among those lending support. You are a strong, independent woman who I know will continue to carry on his words of wisdom as well as yours.

    Rosie Toomey

  31. Chuck Lanigan says:

    I met Pat after his military days. He has been one of my and my wife Sandi’s very best friends for over 25 years. (Joan too!) He defied being cubby holed. When you say marine you get one image. When you say author and lecturer you get another. Then there was the guy who was unabashedly enthusiatic about Michaels adventures and misadventures. Politician and babysitter. Lighthearted and kind. You could count on both. Always promoting someone or some worthwhile thing. Shakespeare. Hop in a play to fill in? Sure! I’ve seen a million pictures of Brady’s kids. the last time I saw him he was laughing (not complaining)about Brady’s lawn. He was planning such a cool surprise for my birthday this past weekend. Thought and legwork involved. Just like him. How do you describe Pat Townsend to someone who never met him? I’ve tried. I tried here again and failed to really convey just how diverse and above all wonderful he was. I was proud to be his friend. He was the finest man I ever met.

  32. Nancy Schumaker says:

    Joan and Family,

    I was a young Sergeant when I had the pleasure of meeting “the Major” at 9th Marine Corps District in Kansas City. Although I did not work directly for the Major, I had several occasions to listen to his life stories. His stories always intrigued me and he had an infectious way of spreading his leadership. He was always very competitive – I remember going to watch their intramural sports at the Community Center. He was always smiling and a true leader! I’m glad to have had the privilege of meeting him! My prayers and thoughts are with you, Joan and family!

    Semper Fi,
    Nancy Schumaker
    MGySgt USMC Retired

  33. nektaria glinou says:

    I have been unable to express my condolences to anyone except Michael so far.
    However, beloved Joan and Brady have been on my mind and heart since September 7.
    While I still cannot find the right words I would like to express my deep sorrow for the loss of an inspirational man, a gentleman that has touched my life in a unique way.
    Joan and Pat have been extremely kind and generous to me and they have provided a role model I will always dream of approaching.. Patrick’s hug is the warmest in the most literal as well as metaphorical sense. I am eternally grateful to him and to life for offering me the opportunity to be around him even for a short while. His memory is a source of strength for me, a force that will always propel me to strive for the most noble achievements and the most tender approach towards my students, my children, and all my fellow human beings. He lives within us forever. Thank you from the bottom of my heart Townsend Family, I love you all dearly, Nektaria

  34. Keith and Kate Buffo says:

    We love that big goof. And we’re sure gonna miss him.

  35. Erynn McDavitt says:

    Mr. Townsend,
    I am so sorry for your unexpected loss. My thoughts and prayers go out to you and the rest of your family.

  36. Phil Toomey 1st 8" Howitzer Battery says:

    At this year’s reunion I was waiting for Capt. Townsend to arrive when someone asked if I recognized a new arrival. Time for him to arrive, but not sure-it had been 42 years and my memory has slipped slightly. Then I heard his voice, no question it was him. As I approached him I was ready to salute (old habits never die). He turned around and saw me standing waiting, stuck out his hand and introduced himself as Pat. Shake an officer’s hand and call him by his first name? Yeah, I’m enlisted.
    I’m pretty sure my old bearded face was not recognized, after all I had one of him to remember and he had hundreds, but after several minutes of conversation and some stories (mostly about Sgt. Jenkins in the motor pool) I knew that he knew who I was. Suprised me how good that made me feel.
    I always asked the others at reunions if they remembered the Captain-most did not know him due to being out on the gun sites or rotating prior to his taking command, but in speaking to them at the reunion they now know why I have referred to him as the best boss I have ever had.
    Pat also vindicated me-I used to tell stories of when he came down the the motor pool to find out why the trucks were not getting back on the road fast enough to supply his gun crews and he was told all the wheel bearing needed to be re-packed after the trucks ran through the river. What can I do to help? he asked. I was instructed to teach him to pack wheel bearings. Me teach the C.O. that? He did, quite expertly in a short time too. Anyway Pat remembered and verified this story for me. He did it again once or twice – I think he needed to get away from the admin. side of his job.
    Pat never talked down to us, never demanded, just told us what needed to be done, in person. Not a common method for an officer. So I am sure that what Chet Knight thinks about his helping bake those Birthday cakes is quite true.
    He had a sense of humor, as when he had me driving him and the Gunny around in the incoming so he could measure craters and collect shrapnel so some one in Washington knew what they were throwing at us (who cared its all incoming). He had his foot on the dash, broom in his right hand like a battle standard, saying “my wife will never believe this” (Pat also verified this story to my nonbeliever friends)
    It was amazing to see Pat again, and Joanie it was absolutely wonderful to meet you.
    I’ll miss not seeing him again, but am so glad I got to one last time, and to see how every one at the reunion was experiencing in such a short time what I had 42 years ago.
    And it still feels strange to call him Pat instead of Skipper, but he did order me to!

    Semper Fi Sir !
    Phil Toomey
    1st 8″ HowBat (SP) motor t

  37. Stan Reed says:

    I opened this e-mail this morning and was shocked and very saddened. I was at Khe Sahn when Captain Townsend took over the Battery so I did not meet him until our reunion last month. I drove for his predessor.
    Bob Marino and I were very close friends in Viet Nam and a couple of years ago we re-established contact. Bob was Captain Townsends driver for some time after I left the Battery. He told me a lot about him but I didn’t know why he thought so much of the Captain. He said being his driver was a very strong, good influence on his life and he could not say enough good about him.
    As soon as I met Captain Townsend at our reunion I understood. What an incredibly friendly, happy, intelligent, kind and decent man! What an honor to have served even briefly under such a great Commander. We chatted at length a number of times and I am very greatful for the opportunity to meet him and get to know him as I did.
    I pray for God’s peace and love, for all of his family and friends. Please do as I will do; cling to the great memories as the pain of loss subsides with time.
    We will see him on the streets of gold. Semper Fi, Stan Reed -Tacoma, Wa

  38. Diane Duffy says:

    My sympathy and prayers go out to you and the family for your loss. I did not have the pleasure of working directly with Pat but I remember his infectious smile. Diane Duffy, Specialty Claims HealthMarkets formerly UICI.

  39. Lisa Gonyea says:

    I did not know Patrick personally but I do work with his wife Joan occasionally.
    To you and your family, I am so sorry for your loss.
    Take care,

  40. Curt W. Reimann says:

    I am deeply saddened by your, and our, loss.
    In the early days of launching the Baldrige Award, Pat provided enthusiastic support at a very critical time—when things were more fragile than perhaps they appeared.
    More recently, Pat visited me and colleagues at Tennessee Tech University to make a presentation there. It was great to renew our contact. I plan to write a piece about Pat
    in our TTU newsletter this Fall. My deepest sympathies…Curt Reimann

  41. Ed Savage says:

    Dear Joan:

    On behalf of myself and Worcester County Light Opera Company I want to offer condolences for the untimely passing of your husband. In reading about him it became obvious he was an accomplished and giving man. Our thoughts and prayers are with you and your family.

    Warmest Regards,
    Ed Savage
    President WCLOC

  42. Willis, Gale and Veronica Reed says:

    We have fond memories of my dear friend, Pat Townsend. He was a very energetic man who brought joy to all that knew him. There is no question that Joan, Mike, Brady, Tracey, Cassandra and Alexandra will miss Pat. Our family came to know him as a result of a chance encounter on a plan when I coached at Creighton University in the early 1980s. Since then, Pat and Joan have shared their love of family, life, adventure and travel with us. We will miss him.

  43. Sam Phillips says:

    To the Townsend Clan,

    Joan my thoughts and prayers are with you and your family. Pat was one of a kind, and I can’t believe he’s gone. I will always be proud that he included me in his circle of friends. He will be missed more than I can say.

  44. Maureen and Stephen Hartley says:

    To the Townsend Family,
    We just heard the sad, unfortunate news about Patrick’s passing. May your memories of him carry you forth during this dificult time. He was such a kind gentleman. Sending you prayers and healing, Maureen and Stephen Hartley

  45. Karen Turner says:

    I am shocked. Pat was life itself, about a life well lived. He came to my classes on Vietnam several times and he was always so open minded and generous that even those who opposed that war and war in general witnessed a true warrior at his best. I am so grateful to have known Pat and to have been able to have some of my students learn from him. He was unique and he will be missed.

  46. Jay Burzak says:

    Change of Mission

    Shocked. Numbed. Angered. Those involved in the profession of arms develop not an ambivalence but grudging acquiescence that in combat they or someone close may, no will, be here one moment and abruptly gone the next.

    Pat was supposed to be beyond that. Beyond the exigencies and vicissitudes of life on point. He had spent his time in hell and was enjoying retirement, fiercely relating the accomplishments of Joanie and his boys as well as lavishly living life anew through the eyes of his grand daughters.

    Blessed with an ever agile mind, acerbic wit and avuncular personality he was forever waxing eloquently on issues he found amusing or more likely ironic. I can still hear his slightly high pitched inhaled nasal laugh resonate as he relates a joke. . . And I smile and take pause to reflect.

    Why am I angry? On deeper and more honest introspection my anger is in part due to the selfish loss of camaraderie. For this I feel ashamed and apologize but compelled to explain.

    My association with Pat goes back to March of 1982, when it was strongly suggested by the general officer, Head of Manpower, that I, in executing a permanent change in station from the West coast to fill Pat’s vacant seat as Marine Officer Instructor at the College of the Holy Cross, may want to stop enroute at the Ninth District Headquarters in Kansas City and pick the brains of the last occupant. Something about decoding the Jesuit mind set that had vexed finding suitable replacement. A general officer’s suggestions is a fait accompli. I had the pleasure of picking Pat’s brains ever since and so glad for the general’s suggestion.

    From the first encounter we bonded in a friendship that crossed continents, hemispheres and the entire planet. I am not unique in this experience but Pat was in his ability to rapidly access others and if he like them grant admission to his pantheon of friends. His Rolodex runneth over but there was always room for more.

    Pat and I most recently would shamelessly commiserate over dinner and a healthy amount of beer, sharing similar life events or perspectives or swapping ribald sea stories or tales of high adventure gallivanting the globe. Stopping only when either out of beer or unable to stand and render honors whenever a new bottle was tapped. (Pat’s bottle opener would play a rendition of the Marine Corps Hymn when applied to its intended use, although the inability to stand may have more to due to aged bladders than the affect of alcohol.) Beer consumption was a skill we both honed among the many Milwaukee breweries during our time as midshipmen at Marquette NROTC although I having been ten years in his trace.

    The Corps being as small as it is, we found ourselves sharing many things and people in common. It seems we were many times like that. A friend, confidant, comrade, he even somewhat an older brother.

    Life is a quixotic fox hole. Apparently Higher Power determined his mission here complete. Directly and simply put Pat received a change of orders to immediately proceed and report. Accepting, he could give but a single answer; Aye, aye!

    Guard the streets well. I will miss you Marine.

    Semper Fi

  47. Bill Denney says:

    He was my friend and mentor, a soldier and patriot. I bless the day Pat came into my life. I am stunned by his passing. I will a lesser person without him.

    Bill Denney

  48. David O'Brien says:

    Pat was a class act. I recall his leadership of ROTC at Holy Cross and his eagerness for collaboration with
    our students (and me) in Peace and Conflict S tudies. He was always smart, generous and open, and I learned a lot from him. Later I admired that same patience and generosity when he was subjected to mean-spirited attacks when he chaired a school building committee in Holden. I wish I had come to know him and his family better. May his family find comfort in the many testimonies they will hear to Pat’s impact on many lives, including my own.

  49. Gail Swain says:

    I am so sorry for all of you for this terrible loss. He was a marvelous guy and Joan, the two of you obviously had such a wonderful life and love together. You will all be in my prayers over the next months in getting through this. Gail

  50. carol massi says:

    We met the Townsend family while on a trip to Egypt with our daughter Karyn. The entire family had such wonderful outlook, always eager for some new experiences, looking forward, not back. I was indeed saddened to hear about the passing of a wonderful man who was passionate about life, who loved his family. Joan, Mike and Brady, please accept my prayers and condolences. Carol Anne Reese Massi

  51. David Rafferty Cpl USMC 1968 says:

    My deepest sympathy to the Townsend family.

    I served under Capt. Townsend in 1968 and interacted with him almost on a daily basis. He and Gunny Giesler brought a new sense of sanity to the Battery and he was true leader. Unfortunately, I could not attend this years reunion but will regret that even more.

    He will not be forgotten.

    Sleep well Marine, you have earned your rest.

    Semper Fi…

    David Rafferty

  52. Athena Burrell says:

    I had the pleasure of knowing and working with Pat at UICI. Pat was a very kind man, a genuine soul, and a lover of life. My sympathies go out to the entire Townsend family. May God sustain and comfort you as you take this difficult journey.

  53. Tim McCormick says:

    I was a Navy corpsman under Pat’s command in Vietnam. He was a CO that won true respect because he cared about his men in the field. He knew us and what we were capable of doing. He pushed us to excel but never tried to break us. Because of his leadership we were the best.
    It was so nice to run into him once again after 42 years. I am sorry that is the last time I will be able to see him. My sincere condolences to Joan and family.
    Semper Fi,
    Doc McCormick

  54. Paul Manoogian says:

    I can’t express how sorry I am at Pat’s passing. We were friends since meeting almost 40 years ago at Camp Pendleton (Pat a Marine and me a contractor, both incredibly young!). I can remember far more than I can write, from helping to hang improvised wallpaper to meeting in Kansas City for Arthur Bryant barbecue and the Red Sox season opener (and rushing back to the hotel for Dancing with the Stars!). Every time I see a baseball highlight from The Ballpark in Arlington I’ll think of the times we broiled in the sun at Red Sox – Rangers games, and at every interesting political development I’ll want to email him again so we can disagree one more time and remain friends. Like everyone else who knew him, I’ll miss him greatly.

  55. Cynthia A. Ciullo says:

    My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family at this difficult time.
    Alum, “The Women”.

  56. Tom Powers says:

    I recently met Pat Townsend and his lovely wife Joan at the reunion of the 1st 8″ Howitzer Battery in August. I was leaving Vietnam in 1968 just as he was arriving, so I didn’t know him then. Meeting Pat and Joan at the reunion was a great experience. I was instantly an old friend and I felt that way about them.
    I was lo0king forward to seeing him again in two years and I am shocked that he’s gone. My sympathies to Joan, family, and friends.

    Semper Fi…
    Tom Powers

  57. Tom Sullivan says:

    I was a “cannon-cocker” w/ 1st 8″ Howitzer Battery from July ’67 through July ’68, and I believe Pat Townsend was the battery CO during my last month or two. I never met him since the battery was split into three platoons (two guns each) and spread out across the DMZ.

    I first met Pat and his lovely wife Joan just a few weeks ago at the battery reunion in Ohio. Despite the fact that they were meeting many of us (if not all) for the first time, there was no transition – it was instant “we’re one big family.” They were warm, congenial, funny, caring and even concerned for some who had hit a bump or two on the way to the reunion.

    My wife mentioned to Joan that I was my family’s genealogist and we hit it off like long lost friends. As we discussed our research achievements and stumbling blocks, I was stunned by the amount of family knowledge she could discuss at length. She is truly a walking encyclopedia.

    As the reunion wound down on the last day, I felt the usual, “Darn, I have to wait two years to see all these great friends again.” On the other hand, it gave me something to really look forward to. Sadly, it will just not be the same without Pat.

    His life’s accomplishments, both personal and professional, speak for themselves. An unbelievably full and inspiring life that one has to wonder how he did it all in just 68 years. My deepest sympathies go out to Joan and to all the Townsend family members.

    Semper Fi …
    Tom Sullivan
    * For those who may be interested, the battery website has photos of the 2010 reunion, past reunions and our time in-country as well.

  58. Kathy Mitchell says:

    Mrs. Townsend and family, I knew Pat while I worked at HealthMarkets. I was so touched by his patriotism and love of country. He did a lot for the veterans while he was at HealthMarkets and from reading the other comments he was obviously active in the community as well. He was truly a GREAT man. My prayers are with you and your family.

  59. Michelle Middleton says:

    Dear Joan and family,
    I am so sorry to hear of your sudden loss. Pat was always so open and welcoming to me the few times I have visited. He was full of incredible stories and wisdom that he truly enjoyed sharing. I know Pat’s passing will leave a big hole in our hearts, but… our hearts are already so much bigger for having known him. Please know my thoughts are with you at this difficult time.
    Michelle Middleton

  60. Jani Rogers says:

    Pat: the warm and genuine master of relationships…you will be terribly missed by ALL who had the fortune of knowing you. To Joan, Michael, Brady and family your loss is tremendous, but never doubt for a moment you all were his world. Pat made the world a better place and no doubt, he has a few quality ideas for the Man himself. Love and sympathy to all…

  61. Susan Dooley says:

    Joanie, Michael and Brady – My thoughts and prayers are with you. I wish I could be there for the services but I will visit Pat when I come back east in October. I owe so much to your Dad – support at Holy Cross, my ROTC scholarship, my Marine Corps career – it goes on and on. He was a very special Marine – one who understood leadership requires passion for your Marines as much as for the mission. Who knew when I was babysitting the boys while at Holy Cross I would some day bring my own daughter to meet the Major. Who knew the day he commissioned me I would spend 23 years in the Corps. He was one very special man.

  62. Dalynnda Odom says:

    Pat made THE BEST chocolate fudge!! And spoiled us rotten in the Mail Center when the Quality Team shared office space with us at HealthMarkets(UICI).
    And it only took him 3 years to get the recipe to me!!

    I have many fond memories of “exploring lunches” with Pat and Joan. You never knew what unique experience awaited you!
    His engaging smile and funny stories will be sorely missed!

    He was so proud of family and shared every event with me, will miss him terribly!
    He even kept in contact with me in Hawaii 🙂

  63. Lisa Martin (UICI) Healthmarkets says:

    My thoughts and prayers are with the Townsend family. Pat was a GREAT man that will be greatly missed.

  64. Cindi Smith says:

    I remember Pat so fondly. He was a master baker and always had some fun stories to tell. He was forever helpful and always there when you needed him or needed advice. I worked with Pat at HealthMarkets, formally known as UICI. He really knew how to get people to think outside the box and I don’t think he ever met a stranger.

    He was a true hero in the eyes of many and will be very missed.

    My heart and prayers go out to the family and all who had the honor to know him. One day we will meet again as I know he is now in Heaven and laughing and being Pat!

    Cindi Smith

  65. Erica Duthie says:

    Mr T,
    When I was born – my own dad apparently was so excited he told all and sundry the great news. Complete strangers were regaled with the delights of his new daughter. Mr T shared this wonderful mix of irrepressible enthusiasm and delight in all Mike does. He was so loyal and passionate about Tape Art and with Mrs T was responsible for re-fuelling the reservoir of support that sustained us in the early years.

    I remember a pre-dinner conversation (my first at Mike’s place) when Mr T having learnt I was a vegetarian –told me I would need to nibble the grass to get sustenance – gesturing out at the snow covered back lawn. He was quite a formidable man upon first encounter and I remember pausing a bit daunted before noticing the twinkle in his eyes.

    Mr & Mrs T gave much more than home base in my time in the States they gave me a sense of being at home, being safe and cared for as part of their family. I will always remember his kindness and generosity.

    He was too vital and with a sense of enduring energy too strong for me to take on board this news. Like some trees that become land marks you navigate too – their absence doesn’t register as possible.

    My thoughts are with you all for your loss.

  66. Kathleen Coomes says:

    Pat was one of those people I wish I would have met earlier in life. For the short time I knew him I enjoyed his stories, jokes and sense of humor. I learned all about his accomplishments recently, but not from him. If you were to ask him what he was most proud of he’d get out his wallet and show them to you – his family photos. I believe I even saw a tear or two when he showed me the photos of his grandkids. I knew he was a class act and will always remember him. Kathleen Coomes

  67. Sally Hewitt McInnis says:

    Dear Mrs. Townsend, Michael and Brady,

    I am so sad to hear about Mr. Townsend. He made a big impression on me when I was a kid and spending so much time over there. I admit that I was sometimes afraid of him, only because of his strict manner with us kids, but of course I got to know him better after so many years hanging out at your house, and I admired him greatly for his obvious love of his family, dedication to his endeavors, and I appreciated early his sense of humor, dry as it usually was. I remember him taking us over to the Y sometimes to exercise, and helping us with sit-ups. I remember him and Mrs. T taking Mike and me over to see a play one night at Holy Cross. The subject matter of the play was so off-color that we were all embarrassed practically to death, and I had to wonder what Mr. T thought about it, but we were too embarrassed to speak on the way home! Oh, those times in the Vanagon. Before Mike had a driver’s license he took me out to dinner one night and Worcester, and Mr. T drove us over and picked us up.

    My thoughts and prayers are with you.

    Sally Hewitt McInnis

  68. Sarah Principe says:


    My thoughts and prayers go out to you during this tragic time. I am so sorry to hear about the loss of your husband. I hope you find strength in your friends and family during this time… The love you shared is so evident in all the pictures and the way you always spoke of him.

    I know it has been a long while since we spoke, but I always think fondly of the time I spent in your office at Holy Cross.

    Once again, I am so sorry for your loss. I am sending you my prayers.
    With love,
    Sarah Principe
    HC Class of 2000

  69. Joannie I was truly sadden to hear this. I will always remember the dinners that You, Pat, Reggie and I shared. You and the family are in our thoughts and prayers.

    Merlinda Johnson (Texas)

  70. Lisa Peck says:

    Pat came to UICI/Healthmarkets at a time when “culture was changing” – to revolve around the customer – and he treated employees as his customer. For many years his projects and theories kept all of us ready to make the company better!! After all making things better around the office meant we would get our picture made with Pat and he would bring us new fun toys for our desk, or an umbrella, or for the BIG ideas really cool trips. He was all about Quality First!! I have so many wonderful memories of him! I never knew my father; all I knew is that he had survived after being a POW in WWII. Pat took time one day to tell me all about what my father had been through. I was grateful age the age of 38 to finally have more insight to what kind of man my father must have been to have endured being captured and all because Pat took time to put his foot up on box my desk, lean on his knee and just visit!! My thoughts and prayers are with the family he loved so much!

    Lisa Peck aka”Kola-T Bear”

  71. Michael Dzick says:

    I just learned of Pat’s passing and wanted to send my deepest sympathies. I manage the World Conference for the American Society for Quality, and Pat was one of the featured speakers at our 2008 event. It was truly an honor to have worked with Pat, and I can honestly say that I learned something from him every time we spoke.

    Pat gave a great speech in Houston, but (at the time) few knew of what it took for him to deliver it. The night before he was to speak, kidney stones put him in the emergency room around 3:00 in the morning. When I found out about it later that morning, we started in on a contingency plan, and (within an hour) had a backup speaker lined up. Soon after that plan was set in motion, Pat called me to let me know he was out of the hospital and on his way. I remember saying, “Pat, you’ve been through a lot. What do you say we push this off till next year.” His response was simple. “I’ve waited 20 years to give this speech and I’m giving it. I’ll see you in 10 minutes.”

    When Pat arrived, I suggested he go up on stage so we could do a sound check. I also thought it’d give us a chance to see if Pat was up to the task. Had I known then, what I know now I wouldn’t have worried. Pat went up to the podium with the lights up and mic on and he just came alive. It was like there was nothing wrong at all. He went on to give one of the most impassioned speeches I’ve ever seen. Through medication, sleep deprivation, and even a case of the hiccups, he held an audience of 2,000 people in the palm of his hand. It is a speech I will never forget. Pat was a hell of a guy who taught me a lot. It is truly an honor for me to be able to say that he was my friend.

  72. Carolyn Eppinger says:

    To the entire family – I would like to extend my sincere sympathy for your tragic loss.

    In the time I have known Pat at Healthmarkets (UICI) he seemed to love life and didn’t have any regrets about his life nor his family. Pat is known as the man that always had a smile on his face and whenever he would come into the departments he would come with an interesting, intriguing story that we would sit and listen to.

    Pat was surely a good and genuine person to have known and I am very pleased to have had that opportunity. The photos tell of the life he enjoyed and loved and had plenty more to give to both life and his family.

    I pray that in your lost you all find comfort and peace in God to help you through this time. Pat lived a good life which the family will continue to live it for and through him. Rest in peace Pat Townsend.


  73. Bobbie Martin says:

    Please accept my deepest condolences. Pat Townsend had a very positive impact on my life during my time at UICI. He was an extremely creative man and he always did things in new ways, thinking outside the box. He even coordinated a musical just to provide employees with the current company strategy. And let us not forget that he was a major “Buffy the Vampire Slayer” fan. He hosted watch parties at his apartment so coworkers could watch episodes together. He was a good person with a good soul, and I’m glad I got the chance to know him.

  74. Amy Porteous says:

    To the Townsend Family, I want to extend my sincere sympathy for the loss of Pat.
    Pat was always telling a funny story either about work or about the military. We
    always appreciated his sense of humor. My thoughts and prayers will be with your family
    through this most difficult time.

  75. Stephanie Major says:

    Dear Mr. Townsend: My sympathy to you and your entire family. I am so very sorry about your dad’s sudden passing.

  76. Rich and Jo Matlak says:

    After the shock, one is left with lasting impressions: Pat’s humor, dry or flip depending on his mood. His great smile and laugh. His commonsensical intelligence which saw with clarity what was at stake on large issues. His loyalty to friends, love for family. His love for his country and love for the Marines. Pat was never not a Marine. He was a soldier whether in military uniform or in a business suit. His last project was to be a book on Leadership and Love, a concept and an understanding which came out of his military experience, but which those outside of the military had difficulty understanding. But Pat was about those two concepts. You lead and you take full and loving responsibility for those you are leading, sometimes to their death. Perhaps only a soldier with combat experience can understand this. When the taps are played at Pat’s funeral, those plaintive notes will be honoring one of America’s finest. Semper Fidelis.

  77. Emily Fenneuff says:

    Our sympathies go out to you and your family during this time.
    I remember when I used to visit my Dad at Holy Cross your dad would always be so happy and had the greatest smile!
    My parents send their thoughts and prayers to you and your family as well.

    Emily Sanchez Fenneuff

  78. Don Rosenberg says:

    Jean & I were deeply shocked and saddened when Mike called last night with the news of Pat’s passing. I’m having trouble wrapping my mind around the idea that a man so full of life could leave us so soon. I met Pat when we were lowly midshipmen in the early ’60s and am proud to have called him friend ever since. His undying spirit will remain an inspiration to me and all who were privileged to have known him. Jean & I send our deepest sympathies to Joan, Mike, Brady, and the rest of the Townsend clan. Our thoughts and prayers are with you at this difficult time.

    Don & Jean

  79. Gillian Bonazoli says:

    Michael –
    I am so very sorry to here this sad news about your dear father. What a wonderful man he was – father, husband and grandfather – and such a supporter of his artist son; he was so proud of you. Jim reminded me of the first time I met Pat, at Marty’s exercise studio in Holden, and actually that was also the first place that I encountered Tape Art. I had many great conversations with your dad over the years, I loved his enthusiasm and his smile, so open and genuine. I am deeply saddened at his untimely loss. My heart goes out to you, your brother and your mother and you are in my thoughts.

  80. Ralph & Maureen Caouette says:

    Brady, Mike–
    Our thoughts, prayers & condolences go out to you both, family & your mother. What comes to mind most now are all the interesting & colorful stories you’ve both relayed over the years of your family & father.

  81. Sons says:

    These were on the website at Miles Funeral Home:

    Joan and family,
    Jeannie and I send our sincere condolences. Pat and your family are true blessings to Jeannie and I. Pat is such a wonderful person–great sense of humor, very intelligent, great family man, super patriot, and true friend. The bottom line of our religious faith is that one day we will go to be with the Lord–and just as importantly, each other. God’s love and peace to you all.
    Gene and Jeannie Townsend
    Gene Townsend
    Sept 10, 2010
    San Antonio, TX


    I am so saddened to hear of Pat’s death. I knew him through the St. Pius X ACTS Trivia nights and so thoroughly enjoyed his sense of humor, stories, and love of knowledge. Especially under the categories of sports and american history(civil war era). His enthusiasm for life was infectious. You couldn’t help but feel better in his presence. In those few evenings it was apparent how much he adored his wife, children and grandchildren. Plus the incredibly strong bond he had with his sister Marilu and devotion to his parents when they were alive. He was a very blessed man but more importantly the people in his life were blessed by knowing him even if it was for only for 1 night a year for the past 8 years. May he rest in peace and may the perpetual light shine upon him.
    Sharon Buckley
    Sept 10, 2010
    San Antonio, TX


    Joan, my heart is breaking for you and your family and all of Patrick’s extended “family” at Holy Cross and the Theatre Department. Patrick was warm, funny, intelligent and one of the most delightful people I have had the pleasure of knowing. I and so many others will miss him terribly.
    Martha Deering
    Sept 9, 2010
    Shrewsbury, MA

  82. Sons says:

    These were on the website for the Bronze Star:

    September 09, 2010
    We will see you, Joan & boys, at the wake/services. But [in case I can’t get this out later on], I just wanted to say that Patrick was a true American hero. His early passing is a tragedy. With my physical & structural ailments, he used to tell me that a wheel chair was in my future and that he would be happy to wheel me into preferred disability seating at Fenway as my “handler.” Patrick epitomized a saying that is just now coming into vogue with regard to Marines – “No better friend”

    Semper Fi – Joseph H. Reinhardt, J.D., Captain, USMC


    September 09, 2010
    I worked with Pat at UICI/HealthMarkets and truly enjoyed his presence as a co-worker and a friend. He always had great advice when I needed one. He will be missed. My deepest sympathy to his wife and kids.
    Carl Desrochers,
    Pittsfield, Massachusetts


    September 09, 2010
    I’m extemely saddened by your sudden loss. He was a wonderful human being,so full of zest for life. He will be greatly missed by all of us.

    With much love and prayer,
    Polly and Scott Frampton
    Polly Frampton,
    Stafford, Virginia


    September 09, 2010
    With deepest sympathy to Joan, the entire Townsend family, and all of Pat’s friends. I will keep him in my prayers.
    Kim McGinty,
    Holden, Massachusetts


    September 10, 2010
    I offer my deepest sympathies to the Townsend family. While knowing Pat for a short time with committee work, I throughly enjoyed his tireless work ethic and warm sense of humor. He will be missed. Todd Manning (Holden, MA)


    September 14, 2010
    Dear Joan: You’ve lost someone who’s been an important part of your life. I hope the emptiness you feel will soon be filled with beautiful memories. Love, Sylvia O’Brien
    Sylvia O’Brien,
    Worcester 01609-2159, Massachusetts


    September 14, 2010
    What a tremendous ‘life force’. Cousin Pat, thank you for showing us all how it should be done. I will always remember that West Covina wedding — sharply dressed Marines with sabres raised — and your beautiful bride, Joanie. What a team the two of you made! To Joan and Marylou, and the rest of the friends and family — my deepest sympathies. I love you all so very much, Again — “THANK YOU, PAT”

    Dan Townsend
    Dan Townsend,
    Long Beach, California

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