Mr. Ward was born in Thomasville, Georgia, on January 29, 1941, to the late Preston Ward and Nellie Elkins Ward. During his senior year in high school, Pat was All-State Debater and High School Football All-American. He graduated from Cairo High School as the valedictorian of the Class of 1959. He attended Davidson College (1959-1960), where he was on the Freshman Council. While attending Emory University (1960-1966), Pat was President of the Barkley Forum, Vice-President of the Student Body, the first national Vice-President of the National Forensic Society, and a member of the Emory Debate Team. He received his LLB in Law in 1964 and his J.D. in 1966. He worked with the Georgia Attorney General’s office in Atlanta, Ga., (1966) after graduation from Emory Law School. From 1967 to 1970, Pat was in law practice with Sims and Lewis Attorneys in LaGrange, Ga. Pat returned to Cairo in 1970 to open a private law practice that continued until 2003. He served as the Grady County State Court Judge from 1979-2002 and the Municipal Court Judge from 1985-2002. Mr. Ward participated in the National Judicial College Programs for Sentencing Misdemeanants (1991), Mediation (1996), and Domestic Violence (1999). Since his retirement from private practice in 2003, Mr. Ward has served as a Senior State Court Judge since 2004, and has conducted seminars for JAG Probation Inc. He also served on the Board of the Thomas County CASA, Inc. He was a member of the First United Methodist Church of Cairo.
Pat was a man of many talents and hobbies. His greatest joy was spending time with his family and friends. He was an avid reader, a serious photographer, a historian, and had a keen interest in the beauty of nature. Pat loved the farm where he and his brother were reared in Pine Park. He was always organized and had stacks of books to be read, projects to work on, or items of interest that he wanted to share with the boys and grandchildren. Pat was also widely traveled, having visited Europe, Asia and 49 of the 50 states. At the time of his death, he and his wife, Cathy, were on vacation in Arizona enjoying the rugged beauty of rock formations and native flora.
Survivors include: his wife, Cathy L. Ward of Cairo, Ga.; sons and daughters-in-law, Patrick and Kayo Ward of Taishin, Japan, James Christopher Ward of Demopolis, Ala., Martin and Nancy Greenlee of Carroll, Ia., Derrick K. Wise of Williston, Fla.; grandchildren, Kotono Jane Ward of Taishin, Japan, Mollie Ann Greenlee, Matthew Allen Greenlee, Samuel Martin, Ryan Robb, Daniel Robb, Cora Robb, of Carroll, Ia.; brother, Bob Ward of Cairo, Ga.; special friends, Teresa Hester of Cairo, Ga., Hattie Mae Johnson of Cairo, Ga., and Willie “Sam” McIntyre of Cairo, Ga.
Mr. Ward was preceded in death by his parents, Preston Ward and Nellie Elkins Ward.
Memorials can be made to: Thomas County CASA, Inc., P. O. Box 1034, Thomasville, GA 31799 or Pine Park Baptist Church Building Fund, 3783 Pine Park Rd., Cairo, GA 39828.
Online condolences can be made at www.clarkfuneral.com.
Clark Funeral Home was in charge of arrangements.