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Duane Francis Patterson was born May 8, 1932 in Chicago, Illinois, the only child of Francis Cleo Patterson and his wife, Agnes Olson. He died February 5, 2023, at 90 years of age. Duane’s father died while he was quite young, leaving him and his mother to fend for themselves. At an early age, Duane determined to live a life of adventure and exploration. Upon graduating high school, Duane joined the Marine Corps, assigned to the front lines of battle in the Korean War. He returned from that conflict, one of only two survivors in his original company. While stationed in Korea, he developed an interest in photography in order to document a country and people foreign to him. Upon his return from Korea, Duane began a career in professional photography, working evenings shooting photos and model portfolios for Barbizon Modeling School in Chicago, as well as advertisements for local department stores. He often laughed that he was one of the first photographers to shoot models in miniskirts. During this period, he also worked as a NASA inspector in what was, at the time, the exciting new space industry. Duane was especially fascinated by indigenous cultures and spent many years exploring ancient civilizations and their artifacts in Baja, Mexico. Having always had an interest in nature and animals, Duane completed his career as Western Editor of “Dog World” magazine. While at “Dog World”, working under the professional name “Cle Francis”, Duane published numerous award winning articles, shooting many magazine covers and writing related cover stories. Following retirement from “Dog World”, Duane moved to the Grand Lake area of Oklahoma, continuing to spend time with wildlife photography and exploring the paranormal. He also became an owner of Von Marja Kennels, a premier breeder of rare Polish Lowland Sheepdogs. Through his efforts, the kennel produced many conformation champions, several agility champions and a number of certified therapy dogs. Together with others, he was successful in helping obtain American Kennel Club recognition for this breed. Duane is survived by his long time companion, Mary Von Drehle, as well as daughters Denise Holt, Jacqueline Mayer and Evian Ruiz and their families. He is also survived by one son, Ed Priz. He is predeceased by his parents and a son, Duane F. Patterson, Jr. and daughter, Laurie Neal. Interment will be by private family graveside services at Centralia Cemetery in Chester, Virginia, on Monday, February 13, 2023. In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to the animal rescue organization of your choice or to the Chesterfield Paranormal Society of Chesterfield, VA.
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