L. Brooks Patterson
Lewis Brooks Patterson (January 4, 1939 – August 3, 2019) was an American lawyer and politician. He served as County Executive of Oakland County, Michigan in Metro Detroit from 1992 until his death. Patterson became the subject of controversy after making what some considered to be inflammatory remarks about the city of Detroit that were reported in 2014.
L. Brooks Patterson
|Oakland County County Executive|
January 1, 1993 – August 3, 2019
|Preceded by||Daniel T. Murphy|
|Succeeded by||David Coulter|
Lewis Brooks Patterson
January 4, 1939
Loogootee, Indiana, U.S.
|Died||August 3, 2019 (aged 80)|
Independence Township, Michigan, U.S.
|Alma mater||University of Detroit (BA), University of Detroit Mercy School of Law (JD)|
Born in Loogootee, Indiana, Patterson graduated from the University of Detroit Jesuit High School and Academy in 1957. He served in the United States Army from 1962 to 1964. He received a Bachelor's degree from the University of Detroit, and his Juris Doctor in 1967 from its law school. In 2005, he was Alumnus of the Year at his alma mater.
Patterson faced criticism after comments he made about the city of Detroit, widely seen as "controversial" and "negative", were released in an article entitled "Drop Dead, Detroit!". Patterson was quoted as saying, among other things, "What we're going to do is turn Detroit into an Indian reservation, where we herd all the Indians into the city, build a fence around it, and then throw in the blankets and corn".
In 2016, Patterson led a legal challenge to the resettlement of Syrian refugees in Oakland County.
During his years as County Executive, Patterson faced serious health problems, twice undergoing surgery to place stents to control blood flow and, in August 2012, being severely injured as the passenger in a car crash that left him hospitalized for a month and then placed in a medical facility for physical rehabilitation. His driver was paralyzed. While in care in October 2012, Patterson dismissed claims that his injuries left him unfit to serve if reelected. Patterson sometimes used a wheelchair due to the injuries he suffered in the accident. In March 2019 Patterson revealed he has stage 4 pancreatic cancer, and would not seek re-election the following year.
In 2007, Patterson lost his son, Brooks Stuart Patterson, in a snowmobile accident and, later that year, lost his twin brother Stephen Patterson. In 2008, he established the Brooksie Way Half Marathon in memory of his son. The event is sponsored by local businesses and draws participants from the Oakland University campus and area residents.
Patterson died on August 3, 2019. He was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer earlier in the year.
- "L. Brooks Patterson, longtime Oakland County executive, dies at 80". The Detroit News. August 3, 2019. Retrieved August 3, 2019.
- "L. Brooks Patterson Slams Detroit: 'The Truth Hurts… Tough S***'". CBS. January 21, 2014. Archived from the original on January 25, 2014. Retrieved January 21, 2014.
- Frye, Stephen. "L. Brooks Patterson dead at 80". The Oakland Press. Retrieved Aug 5, 2019.
- "UD Mercy School of Law". Archived from the original on July 25, 2011. Retrieved October 3, 2012.
- Binelli, p. 114.
- "Patterson says he'll sue to stop refugee resettlement". The Detroit News. September 21, 2016.
- "After crash, 'I love you' easier to say for Oakland County's L. Brooks Patterson". Detroit Free Press. October 1, 2012. Archived from the original on October 21, 2012. Retrieved October 3, 2012.
- Ramirez, Charles E. (October 2, 2012). "Tests show Patterson, driver had no alcohol, drugs in system before crash, attorney says". The Detroit News. Retrieved October 3, 2012.[dead link]
- Williams, Paige (2014-01-20). "Drop Dead, Detroit!". The New Yorker. ISSN 0028-792X. Retrieved 2018-03-28.
- "Oakland Dems question L. Brooks Patterson's ability to serve after crash". Detroit Free Press. October 2, 2012. Retrieved October 3, 2012.
- "Oakland County Executive L. Brooks Patterson has pancreatic cancer". Detroit Free Press. Retrieved 10 April 2019.
- Sokol, Stephanie (October 2, 2012). "Brooksie Way returns to Rochester Hills". The Oakland Post. Retrieved October 3, 2012.
- "Oakland County Executive L. Brooks Patterson: I'll be back in a couple of weeks". Detroit Free Press. September 29, 2012. Retrieved October 3, 2012.