John Arthur Patterson was born in Gothenburg on March 10, 1939. He passed away in peace at the age of 85 on March 30, 2024.

John was raised on a farm by his loving parents, Oren “Pat” and Gertrude Patterson. He graduated from Gothenburg High School where he met the love of his life, Edythe Mae Keiser, and as he used to say, “The best-looking girl in Lincoln County!”

John attended the University of Nebraska at Lincoln and joined the Alpha Gamma Rho fraternity, then enlisted in the United States Army and proudly served our country from 1957-1960. John and Edy intended to get married a few days before Christmas in December 1958; however, the Army had different ideas and they eventually were able to wed on Dec. 28, 1958. The poinsettias had wilted but their love endured for 65 years.

John and Edy settled in North Platte where they both worked and gained many lifelong friends. John spent most of his career at Blue Cross Blue Shield where he covered the western part of the state serving physicians and hospitals as a provider relations consultant for 37 years.

After retirement he joined the First National Bank and excelled at marketing, especially the hospitality part. John and Edy proudly owned Pro Printing for 20 years, bringing the business from bankruptcy to success through innovation and a lot of hard work.

Both John and Edy were very active community members. Most recently, he served on the Great Plains Health Board of Directors and was chairman of the Planning and Strategy Committee. He was proud of the progress and growth of the hospital group during his tenure. In addition, he served as president of many organizations, including the Mid Nebraska Community Foundation, North Platte City Council (where he served for three terms), area Red Cross, North Platte Chamber of Commerce Ambassadors, Rotary and United Way. John also served on the Boards of the North Platte Rodeo Committee, DEVCO and was a TeamMates mentor.

He coached Little League and girls softball for many years and was a 50 year member of First United Methodist Church. He enjoyed Boys Lunch at the Platte, playing poker with the same group for 50 years, his lovely backyard, and driving his truck, Patsy.

John was a Christian, farmer, proud American, soldier, community member, comedian, entrepreneur, friend, sports fan and a lover of all animals and nature. Most of all John was a devoted husband, father, uncle, grandfather and great-grandfather.

He was preceded in death by his parents, Pat and Gertrude.

John is survived by his wife, Edy; children, Jacque Grabouski (Jim), Joi Lecznar (Al) and John Patterson II (Karin); and nephew, Max Davis (Jenn). He was Bopo to his six grandchildren, Jeremy Grabouski (Christina), Jenna Matthey (Neil), Jessica Waterbury (Tom), Alynn Uglum (Adam), Ty Patterson, and Will Patterson; as well as 10 great-grandchildren so far.

John and Edy were proud of the long life and family they built. As he used to say about his life and marriage to Edy, “Not bad for two farm kids.”

Celebration of John’s life will be held at 11:30 a.m., Thursday, April 4 at First United Methodist Church. Visitation is Wednesday from 10 a.m.-6 p.m. and with family greeting from 4-6 p.m. at Odean Colonial Chapel, which is in charge of arrangements. The casket will be closed and family will have a private burial in Fort McPherson National Cemetery.

In lieu of flowers, memorials are to Autism Speaks or First United Methodist Church. Online condolences may be shared at

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