The ALS Association

ALS Ice Bucket Challenge Progress

Making a Lasting Difference—In Memory of Linda

Bob Patterson

Bob Patterson had been retired for just four short months when the twitching began in his wife, Linda's, arm.  A neurologist in Dayton, Ohio, suspected ALS, a diagnosis soon confirmed by a doctor at Albert Einstein in New York.

At the time of Linda's diagnosis, she and Bob had been married for nearly 38 years.  The two met in 1948 at Purdue University after Linda matriculated from Rice University.  After their graduation, while Bob was still on active duty with the United States Navy, he and Linda were married in Indianapolis in 1951.  Following his honorable discharge from the service, and time spent studying at Indiana University, Bob began working with The Trane Company, specialists in designing and manufacturing large commercial air conditioning systems.  In the course of time, the Pattersons owned their own franchised office for The Trane Company, in Dayton.

While Bob worked at the business, Linda was busy as a stay-at-home-mom taking care of their four sons.  Active as a member and volunteer at their Disciples of Christ Church, Linda was also a devoted community advocate, committed to improving race relations and education in Dayton.

For nearly a year following Linda's diagnosis, she and Bob continued to take pleasure in their active lifestyle.  "We enjoyed a lot of Cincinnati Reds baseball games in that summer of 1990, when the Reds led wire-to-wire and won the World Series," Bob shares.

From the time she was diagnosed with ALS, Linda put her faith, not her fears, at the forefront of her life.  It wasn't until that Christmas that Linda cried for the first time. Bob recalls, "We attended an annual Christmas pageant, and she realized it would probably be the last one she would see our grandsons participate in."  With the knowledge that it might be their mother's last Christmas, the Patterson's four sons and their families arrived in Dayton from New York, New Hampshire and Texas to celebrate together.

Just two weeks later, for the first time in their married life, Linda didn't feel up to going to church.  It was a sign to Bob that something was terribly wrong.  That evening Linda was admitted to the hospital with pneumonia.  Six days later, on January 12, 1991, she passed away.

Wanting to pay tribute to Linda's life and memory, and make a lasting difference in the search for a cure to prevent other families from suffering as his had, Bob established a charitable gift annuity with The ALS Association.  In doing so he transferred financial assets, in the form of stock and mutual funds, to The Association.  In return for his generosity, Bob will receive generous fixed income payments for his entire life that are backed by the reserve and assets of The Association.  If Bob predeceases his second wife, Margy, she will receive the fixed monthly payments.


To find out how you can create a legacy of hope through a charitable gift annuity, please contact DJ Hampton, Vice President, Development  You can also learn more about gift annuities by visiting The Association's web site at  All inquiries are strictly confidential.


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