SAVANNAH, Ga. (WSAV) – The city of Savannah is mourning a big loss. Freddie Patrick Sr. passed away in his home on Tuesday.
He spent most of his life working in Eastside Savannah neighborhoods, helping curb crime and connecting people with job opportunities.
Patrick was the man who made things happen. He took the Eastside District by storm with his ideas on crime and community action.
“I think some of the things we need to look at, we look at crime, some of the cause and affects,” Patrick told News 3 in 2004. “Some of the things we are looking at are employment issues people being unemployed, some of the conditions of the neighborhood.”
Neighborhoods were Patrick’s forte. He started the Eastside Concerned Citizens’ Incorporated where people like Mary Osborne’s voices were heard.
“He was really a champion of neighborhoods and I love that about him—actually that’s the heart of your community,” said Osborne.
Osborne said Patrick was like community glue, he brought all walks of life together. His association provided services for seniors, job training and even health screenings.
“He engaged the seniors in many activities at the center and I thought that was a great thing because seniors are often isolated,” said Osborne. “They are left alone and he made sure they were involved with playing cards and that kind of thing.”
In 2004 Patrick served on Savannah’s first-ever citizen’s crime task force. He believed in tackling violence at its root, getting people off the streets and into good-paying jobs.
“That’s Freddie, that was him, he believed in giving people a chance an opportunity not to stigmatize them or criminalize them,” said former Georgia State Senator, Regina Thomas. “He wanted to give them an opportunity and that was all Freddie.”
Thomas said he showed up for people and wasn’t afraid to tell public officials what needed to be done.
“We’re gonna miss Freddie it’s gonna be a gap because he brought together so many people and helped so many people it’s hard… it’s really hard,” said Thomas.
Eastside Concerned Citizens Inc. still holds monthly meetings at the W.W. Law Community Center on East Bolton Street.
Right now, funeral arrangements for Freddie Patrick have not been set.