Pat Patterson was an icon, a WWE Hall of Famer, a creative genius and a friend to many in the wrestling industry. Patterson died at age 79 and former co-workers flooded social media with an outpouring of love and memories.
The first-ever Intercontinental champion had not only a memorable ring career, but his impact on the current generation of stars was evident. Working backstage for WWE he was the creative mind behind some of the biggest ideas in the history of WWE, including the Royal Rumble. He had a knack for implementing unique finishes, and the relationships he forged often extended well beyond the walls of WWE.
Here's how the wrestling world reacted to his passing:
I can not express how crushed I feel right now with the loss of Pat Patterson. A true member of my family, mentor and dear friend.— Shane McMahon (@shanemcmahon) December 2, 2020
I love you Pat.
God speed. pic.twitter.com/FdaAFnsw8m
Loss is incredibly difficult. Those we love are only truly gone if we stop caring. Pat Patterson lived life as it should be lived with passion, love and purpose. He helped so many and always entertained with a story or joke. He will live on in my life always. Love you Patrick.— John Cena (@JohnCena) December 2, 2020
I just heard the terrible news about the passing of Pat Patterson. I loved the man. I could listen to his stories for hours. One of the all-time great wrestlers, one of the best minds in the business, and a dear friend.#RIPPatPatterson https://t.co/SozhlF8bQY— Mick Foley (@RealMickFoley) December 2, 2020
A major loss for the @WWE family today. Pat worked alongside my family for years and was always invested in my success.— Roman Reigns (@WWERomanReigns) December 2, 2020
Brilliant mind for the business and always ready to make a joke ... at your expense!
Rest In Peace, Pat. God bless.
Just heard of the passing this morning if the great, Pat Patterson.— Jim Ross (@JRsBBQ) December 2, 2020
True legend of the pro wrestling business.
A wonderful mentor who taught me so much.
RIP old friend. 🙏 pic.twitter.com/t61R9yCze1
Pat Patterson always sat in or near gorilla and not only watched the shows, but made sure to compliment us on our way back ❤️. But I'll always remember Pat most for coming to Xmas karaoke in NXT to sing the same song every year! Always the main event. He will be missed.— Bayley (@itsBayleyWWE) December 2, 2020
PAT PATTERSON I DONT KNOW WHAT TO SAY OTHER THAN I LOVE YOU. YOU HAVE BEAUTIFUL MIND FOR THIS BUSINESS AND BEAUTIFUL HEART FOR THIS WORLD. MY HEART IS BROKEN. GOD BLESS YOU AND YOUR FAMILY. THANK YOU FOR YOUR FRIENDSHIP #rip pic.twitter.com/XASbSUG0qO— The Iron Sheik (@the_ironsheik) December 2, 2020
Very saddened to hear about the passing of one of my best friends..Pat Patterson. He had an infectious personality where you always wanted to be around him. This photo of Pat, @ShawnMichaels and me was from Wrestlemania 21. Pat helped us create an incredible Story. #RIPHOFer pic.twitter.com/APHVs7hRoi— Kurt Angle (@RealKurtAngle) December 2, 2020
A good man. In all the conversations I had with him there was an underlying thread, and that was the brotherhood/sisterhood throughout the locker room and how much we were a team. Loved life and lived it hard. He was incredibly loved and will be missed. (Pat w/Momma) pic.twitter.com/bTT1LsCxtp— Cody (@CodyRhodes) December 2, 2020
So sad to hear of the passing of @wwe legend Pat Patterson. One of the greatest minds in the business and just an all around great guy. I will miss him and his karaoke! RIP my friend. You are a hero to many! pic.twitter.com/WXFwJ1fjkO— Charles Robinson (@WWERobinson) December 2, 2020
Saddened to hear the news about Pat Patterson. Coming to WWE in 2002 was a "unique" situation. Pat was one of the first to go out of his way and genuinely make me feel at home. We shared many hours, stories, and yes a cocktail or 2. RIP Pat. You did it your way.— Eric Bischoff (@EBischoff) December 2, 2020
Loved @wwe Hall of Famer Pat Patterson as a great friend and a mentor. The incredible times we had traveling the world, watching him sing karaoke, telling stories, talking golf are something I'll treasure forever. Love you Pat, RIP legend. pic.twitter.com/xk3y08J24H— John Layfield (@JCLayfield) December 2, 2020
Pat Patterson knew @WWE was his home away from home, a place where he felt completely accepted and truly loved. Someone like Pat made all the difference because he wasn't afraid to be himself and he made no apologies for it. Pat did it his way. Rest in power, Pat♥️ pic.twitter.com/3hRYmaCb5W— NattieByNature (@NatbyNature) December 2, 2020
Heaven gained an angel! As my heart breaks a bit! Pat Patterson would fill a room w/ laugher, always sit & make me laugh every week in catering by barking & people would wonder where the dog was! Would joke w/ @HEELZiggler & I, & most importantly supported me! #RIPPatPatterson pic.twitter.com/7D65WHToY9— Dana Brooke WWE (@DanaBrookeWWE) December 2, 2020
Sorry to hear the sad news of Pat Patterson passing away. Pat was a really funny guy...not stop smiling & busting chops. No doubt one of the greatest finish men in the history of the business. #RIP pic.twitter.com/Hy6D2cAKrK— head honcho (@OfficialTAZ) December 2, 2020
Pat Patterson was an absolute legend in and out of the ring. I'll miss him very much. pic.twitter.com/pgizW5rGB5— Matt Cardona (@TheMattCardona) December 2, 2020
Any interaction I ever had with Pat Patterson, albeit brief, was very enjoyable and an opportunity to learn. RIP to a trailblazer and great professional wrestler. A man who truly broke through barriers and an outstanding credit to our business. Godspeed sir 😢— Frankie Kazarian (@FrankieKazarian) December 2, 2020