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Tribe: Navajo Code Talker dies in New Mexico

Posted at 1:51 PM, Oct 09, 2017
and last updated 2017-10-09 16:51:32-04

Navajo Nation officials say Navajo Code Talker David Patterson Sr. has died in New Mexico.

Tribal officials say Patterson died Sunday in Rio Rancho at age 94 from pneumonia and complications from subdural hematoma.
The code talkers used the Navajo language to outsmart the Japanese in World War II.

Patterson served in the Marine Corps from 1943 to 1945 and was the recipient of the Silver Congressional Medal of Honor in 2001.

After his military service, Patterson became a social worker and worked for the tribe's Division of Social Services until retiring in 1987.

Patterson is survived by six children.

Funeral services are pending and will be held at Christ The King Catholic Church in Shiprock, New Mexico.

Patterson will be buried on the military side of the Shiprock Cemetery.