By Meranda Masse
Department Communications & Graduate Student (Cavagnero)
Dr. Patrick Meier was the kind of mentor who could be in the hospital and would still take the time to catch up with a former student who was now his caregiver, which is exactly the story Professor Kay Meier told about her late husband.
“He actually always envisioned himself as a teacher,” said Kay when commenting on how Patrick would describe his profession.
Kay and Patrick got married the day after their undergraduate graduation, and later packed their bags to attend University of Wisconsin-Madison together as graduate students. Along with their support of one another, Kay mentioned how important friendships were to them throughout their studies.
“What sustained us is the friendships with fellow students, in Chemistry particularly,” she said.
Patrick Meier graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Madison with a Ph.D. in Chemistry under the mentorship of Professor Edwin Vedejs and taught at University of Wisconsin, University of Washington, Medical University of South Carolina, Washington State University and Spokane Falls Community College before his passing in late 2019.
Kay said that Patrick “really enjoyed being in the lab,” commenting on how he spent a lot of time doing research during his graduate school career. After graduate school, Patrick continued his long hours in lab mentoring students. He felt that research was an important skill for his students to have.
Patrick also loved to be involved within his community. Whether that be volunteering at Lentil Fest in Pullman, WA, or taking his students up to the roof of his home in Seattle, WA to look at the Blue Angel planes flying above.
“We used to host events for students quite often,” Kay mentioned. She went on to say that Patrick would raise animals for his community members or students on their farm. Sometimes these animals would be provided to international students that Patrick mentored, whether it be for religious purposes or a celebration. Patrick loved to learn from the international students he taught and loved to travel. Kay said that they traveled often, and Patrick liked to immerse himself in different cultures and have new experiences.
The love that Patrick had for his community, friends, family and students was exemplified in not only how he lived his life, but also his effective mentoring style. Patrick’s impact on his students is a legacy that can be passed on to their own mentees for years to come.
Obituary from Moscow-Pullman Daily News.