R.I.P. John 'JP' Patterson (1948 - 2016)
"In early February 2016, I was informed by series director Ian Munro that John Patterson, well-known screenwriter/playwright had recently passed away in Coffs Harbour, aged only 67. John co-created the Johnson & Friends series and wrote all 78 episodes of the series. He also wrote the lyrics to all the Johnson songs and several books based on the series. Even though I didn't have the chance to meet him - this news hit me hard. While writing the series, John was severely depressed - yet he was still able to write one of the best children's television series ever produced. At times - Johnson had some very sad and emotionally moving episodes, and I now understand where the inspiration for those came from. I was, however, glad to hear that when John passed away he had overcome his depression and was in a happy state of mind. After writing for several television productions including Fatty and George (1980), Johnson & Friends (1990-1995), Boffins (1993), Escape from Jupiter (1994), Return to Jupiter (1997) and The Toothbrush Family (1997), John ended up working as a tour guide at The Rocks in Sydney for some time. I've been interested in Johnson for many years and over that time period I have managed to make friends with many of the cast and crew, including Ian Munro - co-creator and one of the directors of the series, Garry Scale - the unmistakable voice of Johnson, Chris Neal - the series' music composer, and many others. But out of those I'd not been able to get in contact with, John was the one I wanted to speak to most - as he not only brought the characters to life, put personality into these toys (and hot water bottles) but also created a huge part of my childhood - and something I still love to this day.
Rest in Peace John - I never had the chance to meet you, but you and your legendary creations have had a massive impact on my life - the Johnson series has helped me to overcome spells of depression and anxiety." - Joseph Marshall (site creator)
"Vale John Patterson, the very clever writer of Johnson & Friends. R.I.P, dear man x." - Garry Scale (Johnson)
"He was a lovely man and a wonderful writer." - Katrina Sedgwick (McDuff)
"He certainly was a wonderful talent and opened doors and windows to our hearts and minds... R.I.P. John." - Peter Browne (Alfred)
"Joseph. That is beautifully done. So appropriate." - Ian Munro (series director and co-creator, in regards to my memorial image)
"Vale, Mr. Patterson." - David Ogilvy (series director)
"Beautiful words, my friend. John would be chuffed indeed." - Chris Neal (music composer, in regards to my above speech)
JP made an appearance in the "In Memoriam" section of the 2016 Logie Awards, pictured with Johnson.. Absolutely touching.