Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Donovan Patten

Donovan was the youngest boy, but older than Eliza. I know even less about him. The things I think I know about him, do not match the existing records that I have been able to locate.
Donovan Patten: over the years

When I look at his picture, I am reminded of my own brother, Mark. Donovan was obviously a very handsome fellow. As demonstrated by the photographs below, he was very close to Eliza. So close, that Eliza claimed that Donovan had come home from Alaska where he purportedly worked on the Alaskan pipeline. During such time he contracted TB/Tuberculosis and returned home to Texas to die. My grandmother told me that one day he grabbed her up and smothered her with kisses all the while telling her that he was dying and was going to take her with him.

Eliza and Donovan
Eliza with a playful Donovan

My grandmother actually did contact TB. Since it is a highly contagious disease,and tuberculosis is spread through the air, when people who have the disease cough, sneeze or spit. I just do not know if transmission is possible from being smothered with with non intimate kisses.

Eliza and Donovan
Eliza and Donovan

Whether he could transmit it or not, in fact, Donovan died at the age of 19 on March, 8, 1927. His death certificate indicated that pulmonary tubercolosis was the cause of death. The death certificate was signed by his sister, Dr. Thelma Patten Law. Of note, the certificate indicated that he was a student, not a pipeline worker.

Donovan Patten Death Certificate
Donovan Patten's Death Certificate