Richard Patrick BLAIR
March 6, 1961 – May 3, 2019
Richard Patrick Blair, 58, of Martinsville, Virginia, passed away peacefully, Friday, May 3, 2019, at Carilion Roanoke Memorial Hospital.
Patrick was born of the late Barbara Ann Foley at Martinsville Memorial Hospital on March 6, 1961, and was promptly adopted by a loving couple, the late Luther Rhodes and Doris Huckaby Blair, also of Martinsville.
He graduated Martinsville High School, and within 2 years he had earned his commercial pilot's license and went on to graduate Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University with a Bachelor of Science in Professional Aeronautics.
After enlisting in the U.S. Army, through diligence and a strong desire to reach his full potential, he continued his training and became 'one of the best' Apache pilots. He gained an exemplary record of successful, completed missions, earning many awards, medals, and commendations; such as the Legion of Merit, the Air Medal, the Army and National Defense Commendation and Service medals, the SW Asia Service Medal w/ Bronze Service Star and numerous other accolades.
Patrick served as an instructor at the U.S. Army's "War College" providing graduate-level instruction to senior military officers to prepare them for senior leadership assignments and responsibilities and very much enjoyed sharing his knowledge and 1st hand experiences to help prepare others. Many of his fellow pilots looked to him as a mentor even years before before taking this post.
Patrick was both an OH-58A/C Scout Pilot and an AH-64A Apache attack pilot. He was deployed overseas for several years to Korea, Germany, and various Middle Eastern locations during the Gulf War. He was a member of the 3-101st Aviation "Blue Max" regiment. As he rose in rank, he also served as an AH-64 Standardization Instructor Pilot.
In 2007, he retired honorably out of Fort Rucker, AL, as a Chief Warrant Officer Four (CW4) after a career spanning more than 30 years. He then returned to his childhood home here in Martinsville VA, and reconnected with family and friends.
In addition to his parents, Patrick was preceded in death by his brother, "Tony" Anthony Clell Blair. Those left to honor his memory include his daughter, Lara Blair Keatts and her husband Justin Keatts; grandchildren, Sophia Blair-Chisom and Lyric Thomas Keatts; sister, Lisa Foley Ellis-Shooks; cousins, Anna Donahoe Mick and Vickie Binstead; nephew, Michael Anthony Blair; girlfriend, Cindy Watts; and his extensive military brethren.
A visitation for Chief Warrant Officer 04 Blair (retired) will be held from 12:30 p.m. to 2:00 p.m. on Monday, May 13, 2019 at McKee Stone Funeral Home. A graveside service with full military honors will follow at Oakwood Cemetery.
Flowers in military appropriate color preferred.
To express condolences online, please visit www.collinsmckeestonemartinsville.com Arrangements are by McKee-Stone Funeral Home-Martinsville, VA
- Visitation/Receiving of Friends Monday, May 13, 2019
- Graveside Service at Oakwood Cemetary Monday, May 13, 2019
Richard Patrick BLAIR
May 22, 2019
I had lost touch with Patrick over the years but he was in my thoughts often. I am at a loss to describe how I feel. Patrick was a good person, a decent human and gone way too soon. We had some really good times and I tell my friends about him often. I hope he still has his 3 prong fork with him. I miss you terribly, my friend.
Mary Katherine Moorman
May 15, 2019
I was friends with Patrick when I was a little girl. My mother and his mother Doris were good friends and played bridge together. I have fond memories of playing with Patrick and his younger brother Tony at their home on Church Street. We pinned towels on the backs of our shirts and played superheroes like Batman and Robin. I was a year younger than Patrick and always looked up to him as if he were my brother. I remember nicknaming him “Paddy Cake’, after the nursery rhyme, which , in hindsight, I’m sure he did not care for. Rest In Peace my friend Patrick. My condolences go to his family .
May 13, 2019
He was a great friend it has been along time since I’ve seen him but have always thought so much of him I’ve missed him before but now will miss him greatly since I know I won’t have a chance to be with him again he meant a lot to me not sure he really knew a great friend I miss him my prayers go out to his family and other friends
May 13, 2019
Fast times at Mavahi, until we meet again my friend, fellow warrior. R.I.P.
May 11, 2019
God’s speed Blackcat-Army strong
May 10, 2019
I have very fond memories or Mr Blair I crewchiefed for him during my time with Blue Max always a stand up guy and it didn’t matter if you were enlisted or an officer always treated everyone the same Godspeed sir blue max forever. Moose