It is with a mix of great sadness and deep fondness that we honor Patrick John Wessel, who died on October 24, 2010.
Patrick was a 2007 graduate of Saint Louis University. During his undergraduate years he performed some video editing work for several MOCRA exhibitions. Patrick fit right in at MOCRA. He was the youngest of eight Wessel children, all of whom attended SLU. Two of his older brothers worked as gallery assistants at the museum.
Patrick was a delightful young man to work with, brimming with creative energy. His slightly off-beat outlook was expressed in his vintage clothing and his inimitable loping stride. On any number of occasions, as MOCRA’s Director, Terrence Dempsey, and I strolled across campus, one of us would point out Patrick from a hundred yards away. Fr. Dempsey since has remarked that Patrick’s gait simultaneously expressed a laid-back attitude and a clear sense of purpose.
After graduation Patrick made his way to New York City. We knew he had been making inroads into the indie cinema scene, and also getting some attention as a model. Since his death, and especially at the time of his memorial service last Friday (at which over 500 people gathered from all over the country), we have heard many more stories about Patrick’s many adventures and interests. These stories only serve to reinforce what a brilliant and endearing person has departed from our lives.
To Patrick’s loved ones, we extend our heartfelt sympathy. We are grateful for the time we had to share with him.
A fine tribute to Patrick appeared in the blogs of the Riverfront Times, which you can read here.
This “screen test” interview that Patrick gave with a modeling agency also gives a flavor of his wit and generous attitude toward life.
Peace be with you, Patrick.
— David Brinker, Assistant Director