Lt. Col. John Henry Patterson
He served in the British Army during the Second Anglo-Boer War (1899-1902), and was discharged with the rank of Lieutenant Colonel. He was awarded the Distinguished Service Order (DSO) for his military service.
On the outbreak of World War I, Patterson rejoined the ranks of the British Army. In 1915, he was appointed commander of the Zion Mule Corps, which was set up in Alexandria, Egypt, as a unique Jewish Legion within the framework of the British Army. His adjutant was Yoseph Trumpeldor. The Corps played an important role in the battle against the Ottoman Turkish Army on the Gallipoli Peninsula.
After the end of the Gallipoli battle and the disbanding of the Corps, Patterson returned o the UK, and in 1917 he volunteered to command the 38th Legion of the Royal Fusiliers, whose establishment was initiated by Ze’ev (Vladimir) Jabotinsky, who even served as one of the officers. The 38th Legion was the first of
Patterson was considered a true friend of the Jewish people, and he worked for the establishment of the State of Israel. He died in Los Angeles, in the USA, on June 18, 1947. John Henry Patterson had asked to be buried alongside his soldiers. His grandson, Alan Patterson, took upon himself to realize this last request. He approached the government of Israel with a request to fulfil his grandfather’s wish ”to lie in his eternal rest alongside those he commanded from the Jewish Legion… And bring the urn carrying his ashes for burial on Israeli soil.”
In appreciation for Lt. Colonel Patterson and his work, the Government of Israel headed by Prime Minister Binaymin Netanyahu acceded to the request. On December 2, 2014, the ashes of John Henry Patterson and his wife Frances Helena were brought for re-interment in Moshav Avihayil, a farming community that was founded by Jewish Legion veterans.
At the Jewish Legion Museum in Moshav Avihayil and at the Jabotinsky Institute in Tel Aviv, it is possible to learn more about the actions of Patterson and his troops.
Erected 2014 by State of Israel, the Jewish American Society for Historic Preservation,
Topics and series. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Churches & Religion • War, World I • Wars, Non-US. In addition, it is included in the Jewish American Society for Historic Preservation Markers series list.
Location. 32° 21.153′ N, 34° 52.389′ E. Marker is in Avihayil, Central District, in Hefer Valley Regional Council. The marker is located in the Cemetery of Avihayil adjacent to the raised platform containing the cremains of Col. Patterson and his wife Frances. Touch for map. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 16 kilometers of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Column Capitals (approx. 16.1 kilometers away in Haifa District); Sarcophagi (approx. 16.1 kilometers away in Haifa District); The Theater (approx. 16.1 kilometers away in Haifa District); Architectural Elements (approx. 16.1 kilometers away in Haifa District); A Collection of Architectural Artifacts (approx. 16.1 kilometers away in Haifa District); The Promontory Palace (approx. 16.1 kilometers away in Haifa District); The Roman Well (approx. 16.2 kilometers away in Haifa District); The Lower Palace (approx. 16.2 kilometers away in Haifa District).
More about this marker. The return and the reburial of Col. Patterson was a four-year effort undertook by the Jewish American Society for Historic Preservation (JASHP) and supporters from the Avihayil Moshav, requested and authorized by Alan Patterson.
The location of the internment and the marker placement was determined by the Chief Rabbi of Netanya, to be consistent with Jewish law, and the Avihayil supporters of the project.
Regarding Lt. Col. John Henry Patterson. Col. Patterson was a Christian Zionist supporter of the Zionist ideal who led the first Jewish army in 2,000 years to liberate Palestine from the Ottoman Turks. Deeply anti-Semitic elements within the British Army and the British Mandate for Palestine sought and succeeded in obtaining Patterson's retirement from the British Army. Patterson remained closely associated with the Zionist effort and Zeev Jabotinsky to reestablish the Jewish homeland and the later State of Israel.
Jabotinsky's personal secretary was Ben-Zion Netanyahu. Patterson and the Netanyahus became very close. When the Netanyahus had their first child, they made Patterson his Godfather and named him after John Henry Patterson - Jonathan.
Jonathan (Yoni) Netanyahu was killed freeing the Jewish and Israeli captives taken by Palestinian terrorists in the famous Uganda operation.
When JASHP and the Avihayil supporters, on behalf of Alan Patterson, approached Prime Minister Netanyahu for support for the reburial effort in Avihayil, the Prime Minister granted the support and provided considerable logistical aid.
Also see . . .
1. Non-Jewish L.A. Zionist John Henry Patterson buried in Israel by Orit Arfa, Los Angeles Jewish Times. (Submitted on June 1, 2019, by Jerry Klinger of Boynton Beach, Florida.)
2. ‘WE SALUTE YOU, JOHN HENRY PATTERSON’ INSIDE THE EMBASSY, Int. Christian Embassy in Jerusalem. (Submitted on June 1, 2019, by Jerry Klinger of Boynton Beach, Florida.)
3. Lt. Col. John Henry Patterson The Christian godfather of the Israeli Army The godfather of Yonni Net . (Submitted on June 1, 2019, by Jerry Klinger of Boynton Beach, Florida.)
Credits. This page was last revised on January 2, 2020. It was originally submitted on June 1, 2019, by Jerry Klinger of Boynton Beach, Florida. This page has been viewed 93 times since then and 30 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3. submitted on June 1, 2019, by Jerry Klinger of Boynton Beach, Florida. • Andrew Ruppenstein was the editor who published this page.