David Patterson coached the great Dee Dee Foster to become the first Elite gymnast from the state of Alabama, the first gymnast in the State to qualify as a USA national team member.
Dee Foster Worley:
… when I learned Sarah and David were stepping down as one of the most dominant coaching tandems in any sport – and that Dana had been tapped as the new head coach – I cried.
I cried for the 35 years Sarah and David have been in my life, teaching me to properly steward my gifts and my womanhood.
I cried because I know that Sarah’s passionate commitment to the University of Alabama gymnastics program is an eternal flame that will never extinguish.
I cried because David, who is one of the best coaches that has ever or will ever grace the planet, will end his gymnastics coaching career as he lived it: humbly in the background, holding everyone up with his quiet might and taking none of the credit for his immeasurable contribution to their success.
I cried because, although I will miss seeing my mentors at the helm, I am almost airborne with joy because my good friend has earned the opportunity of a lifetime.
I cried because I know Dana will be heavily armed with the beautiful burden of continuing a legacy of – not just excellence – but supremacy.
I cried because I can see what’s ahead for my good friend. And it’s the same thing that’s always been ahead for her: a steady, sturdy, next-level rise and a long, fruitful trailblazing journey.
Dee was the 1985 USA National All-Around champion. The first African-American gymnast to compete for the Crimson Tide.