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Joseph Patton

A WWII veteran's body is found in the passenger seat of his truck

  • Last updated: August 5, 2022
  • Panama City, FL
  • February 6, 1994

Overview of Joseph Patton

Joseph Patton was a 76 year old veteran whose life was taken far too soon.

Joseph Walker Patton was a World War II veteran, who had driven supply trucks in France during his time in the service, before returning to Florida and working at a paper mill. Sadly, there isn’t much additional information about who Joseph was as a person, or the life that he lived, but we do know that he was happily married, a true gentleman, and he did not have any children.

The night of Joseph’s death.

Joseph was last seen alive sometime on the evening of February 6, 1994. Later that evening, around 11:00 pm, his truck, a light blue 1991 Ford pickup truck, was seen parking on Mercedes Avenue in Panama City, FL, facing west. According to a witness, the car’s engine and headlights remained on for approximately 30 minutes, before both turned off. The witness never reports seeing anyone exit or enter the vehicle. Another witness reports seeing an unidentified male washing himself off at a water fountain behind the building where Joseph’s truck was parked. It is unknown whether Joseph was driving the truck at this time. 

Joseph Patton's light blue, 1991 Ford pickup truck.

The following morning, Joseph’s body is found.

The following morning at 7:43 am, police received a report of someone unconscious in a vehicle. When police arrived on the scene, they found Joseph face-down in the passenger’s seat of his truck, in a pool of his own blood. Joseph had been hit over the head, causing a head injury, but his cause of death was a “severe laceration to the throat”.

Joseph's truck was found parked facing West on Mercedes Ave in Panama City, FL.

According to investigators, Joseph’s truck keys and more blood were found inside of an apartment somewhere in the area, though they do not share any additional details. Authorities do, however, note that they were unsure of whether the blood belonged to Joseph.

Was Joseph the one driving his truck that night? If so, why did he choose to park in that area of Panama City, when he lived in Callaway, FL? If his keys were found in an apartment, can we assume that Joseph may have been abducted prior to the attack? Was the blood found in the apartment compared to Joseph’s blood? What were the results?

Where the case stands today.

Today, it has been over 28 years since Joseph was brutally attacked and killed, and his case remains unsolved. There hasn’t been much media attention surrounding Joseph’s case, and there hasn’t been any official update in several years. If you have any information, please contact Panhandle Crime Stoppers at (850) 785-TIPS (8477).


  1. Date Found:February 7, 1994
  2. Date of Death:February 6, 1994
  3. Birthday:July 27, 1917
  4. Age at Incident:76
  5. Race:Caucasian / White
  6. Gender:Male

What's Left to be Uncovered

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