James Karon Patrick | AspenTimes.com

James Karon Patrick

James Patrick died May 19 in Aspen.

Dr. James Karon Patrick (Jim, Bud), 78, died peacefully in Aspen on May 19, 2006, surrounded by family, friends and colleagues. Born and raised in Camden, Ark., his life was shaped by the importance of family and community, and in every way he lived the life he loved and he loved the life he lived.

James K. loved his family. He is survived by his wife of 51 years, Lily R. Patrick, of Aspen, and their five children: Dahlgren Ekonomides and her husband, Costas; Danielle Milam and her children Per, Benjamin, Sophie and Bergen; Daren DuFriend and her husband, Duffy; Todd Patrick and his wife, Chris; and Chad Patrick and his wife, Lori, and their children, Sydney and Nicole. He is also survived by two sisters, Dorothy Patrick Spruce and Claire Patrick Glenn; nieces Sharon Spruce Bennett and Martha Louise Hultquist Fortney; and nephews Denny Spruce, Pat Spruce and Chris Hultquist. He was preceded in death by his parents, Duard and Dorothy Patrick, and brother, Sonny Patrick. He was a father, coach and guide for many other extended families, friends of his children and a multitude of people he cared for and inspired.Jim loved his community. From his earliest days of working the soda fountain at his father’s pharmacy in Camden, he cultivated lasting friendships using conversations and desserts. He traveled and kept close touch with friends from Camden High, the SAE fraternity and his buddies from his medical school days at Tulane University. He developed deep friendships with many, many people. He came to be known as a country doctor and civic leader in Fayetteville, Ark., where he practiced family medicine for 34 years. In the past 18 years in Aspen, he worked with Aspen Valley Hospital and Roaring Fork Hospice. His doctoring ways involved caring conversations as much as his medical expertise.

Upon retiring, his hobbies included playing trumpet and trombone “gigs” with the Bleeker Street Romantics Dance Band, skiing, camping and hiking. He was an avid reader and enjoyed coffee klatches with friends and neighbors. His dedication to the community good was extensive, as evidenced by his Army service as a medic in Japan in 1946-47; civilian work as a volunteer physician in Vietnam in the late 1960s; directorship of family practitioner training with the University of Arkansas’ AHEC clinic in the 1980s; work as a locum tenens physician; and his most recent volunteer work helping hurricane Katrina and Wilma victims with the Red Cross last fall. His civic commitment was marked by service on a multitude of health, church, fraternity, and education boards and campaigns throughout his life.

Jim also loved and explored the world. He spent many good times enjoying Mother Nature with family and friends. He and Lily traveled to many of the Earth’s most beautiful places. Family vacations were spent exploring many of the nation’s national parks. Innumerable outings with family, friends and hunting dogs involved romps through woods, floating rivers, fishing, hiking, watching wildlife, or philosophizing around a campfire, appreciating the beauty of the earth and skies around him, humming a tune or two and enjoying every minute. He inquired into and practiced a deep respect for diverse cultures and human nature. Celebration of life services will be at Aspen Community Church (United Methodist) at 11 a.m. Thursday, May 25, 2006. In lieu of flowers, the family requests memorial donations be directed to the American Cancer Society (bladder and kidney research), Roaring Fork Hospice Valley View Hospital, Aspen Community Church (United Methodist), Aspen Center for Environmental Studies or the Pitkin County Library.

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