James Austin Patterson passed away last Wednesday after a heart attack while awaiting heart and kidney transplant surgery. His innate and natural charm, sense of humor, quick intelligence, giving and generous nature, and his quiet strength and brave efforts to live to the fullest, are but a few of the qualities that we cherish and remember him for.
James was born in Mt. View, CA, grew up in Sunnyvale, CA, and attended St. Francis High School in Mt. View. As a teen he became a part of the volunteer Police Cadet program for the City of Sunnyvale where he was lauded for his work assisting police officers and for his natural strengths in the field. Later, after moving to Roseville, CA and volunteering as a CASA (Court Appointed Special Advocate) in Placer County for a year, James was hired by Placer County as a Public Guardian assisting clients under conservator care. From there he was promoted to begin his career as a Client Care Coordinator in the Adult System of Care in Placer County, connecting the homeless population to resources for housing and mental health services, providing 1:1 case management, and teaching courses to assist in the population’s advancement.
While working in his fulltime position as a Client Care Coordinator, James continued to volunteer many hours as a CASA where he worked to prevent abused, neglected, abandoned, and at-risk teens from becoming lost in the overburdened juvenile court system. In addition to representing these teens individually in the court system and advising judges on matters for the teen’s betterment, James would take his “CASA kid” to ball games, out to dinner, camping, and other fun outings providing meaningful connection, and would remain available to them by phone and in person as needed. He often served as a lifeline to these children facing dire situations. James was a CASA for over 10 years and formed mutually meaningful bonds with multiple teens in need.
James greatly enjoyed world travel and a gourmet lifestyle. Close to his heart were his trips with family to the French Riviera town of Grimaud, and La Selva Beach, CA, both places of family homes where cherished childhood memories were formed. He enjoyed the timeless beauty of Tahoe, camping in Pinecrest, the TV show Bonanza, and being a sharp dresser. Meaningful to him also, were his friends and co-workers, nieces and nephews, and his beloved dogs, Sam, Dallas, and Jake.
James is the beloved son of Thomas Shaw Patterson, Jr., and Nicole Helene Marie Demortiere, last of Sunnyvale, CA. He is survived by his loving siblings, sisters Kathy DiPrinzio (Steve) of Tucson, AZ, Barbara Patterson of Roseville, Linda Patterson Mitchell of Los Gatos, and brother Chris Patterson of Aliso Viejo. He is also survived by loving nieces and nephews, Serena Kahlen (Bryan) of San Diego, Gena McLaughlin (Dean) of Tucson, AZ, Austin Patterson of San Jose, Adam Patterson and Erin Patterson of Aliso Viejo, and Lauren Mitchell and Thomas Mitchell of Los Gatos. We love you always, Jimmy, and will miss you until we see each other again.
James’ outdoor funeral service and burial will take place on Monday, August 10 at 1:00 at Madronia Cemetery, 14766 Oak Street, Saratoga, CA 95070. Due to COVID-19, attendance is limited to 25 people, and masks and distancing are required. Those wishing to attend may contact Darling & Fischer Chapel of the Hills at (408) 354-7740 to convey their interest and receive a response as to whether there is room within the number of guests allowed. Flowers may be sent to Darling & Fischer at 615 N. Santa Cruz Avenue, Los Gatos, CA 95030. In lieu of flowers, those wishing to may make a donation in James’ name to the CASA program of Placer County at the following link: https://casaplacer1.wpengine.com/donate/
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