There was a touching — and tasty — tribute this weekend in Cedar Falls for a young man police believe was murdered two months ago. Investigators believe 20-year-old Jesse Patchin, a Waterloo West graduate, was murdered October 1, but his body has never been found.
His family and friends gathered for a memorial service Saturday, then adjourned to the church’s fellowship hall to eat apple pie. Sixty pies were made — all from Jesse’s own recipe and luncheon organizer Genny Van Dorn says they fed over two-hundred. “I knew we could pull it off, but I didn’t know this well,” she says. Patchin’s sister, April Buenger, says her brother used the recipe to bake apple pie for every family gathering. “Everybody just wants to do something,” Buenger says of the pie-baking for the luncheon. “That was a good way to show their support and care for our family.”
The memorial service was a difficult time for the family. “It was very different being in there in the service knowing that he’s there, but physically he wasn’t there,” his sister says. One of Patchin’s grandmother’s says there won’t be closure for the family until her grandson’s body is found. “It’s just hard to believe that he’s out there in the snow and nobody knows where he is,” she says.
Patchin’s sister says the family needed to have the memorial service, though, to say the things they needed to say. “I just want to tell him that I love him and we’re all going to miss him and my boys miss him a lot,” she says.”I’m glad that he’s in a better place now.”
Authorities believe Patchin was slain during a drug deal and 24-year-old James Raymond of Clarksville was charged with Patchin’s murder last month. The minister at Patchin’s memorial service asked mourners to look beyond the circumstances of Patchin’s death and remember his entire life, which included Patchin’s playing the piano and handbells and singing in the church choir.