Friends of Patrick Kindred talk about his accomplishments and compassion
Friends and family paint a different picture of Patrick Kindred than what’s found in the media coverage of his arrest and trial so far.
Kindred, the ASUO external vice president, is currently in Lane County Jail after he was arrested for criminal trespass, disorderly conduct, criminal mischief and resisting arrest. His repeated protests during a Feb. 12 court appearance led Judge Mary Mori to rule that he was in an unfit state for release and would be held until Feb. 19.
If the scene in the courtroom during his last hearing is any indication, Kindred will have the backing of more than two dozen friends, family and well-wishers at his next hearing.
According to friends and Kindred’s Facebook, Kindred suffered a head injury in late 2014 that those who know him believe contributed to his recent outbursts. He was told to take two months to recuperate, but he decided to return to his regular duties within two weeks of release from the hospital, his friends said.
“He likes to be busy,” ASUO Chief of Staff Lamar Wise said. “He wanted to feel like he was better.”
According to Wise, Kindred displayed paranoia and anxiety that seemed to worsen as time went on. Kindred’s social media accounts eventually reflected this.
“there are 25.000 students half need to be Executed for treason yall know who my friends are I hope they do lol! america has 48 hours to meet my demands,” one post read.
Wise and others pleaded with him to seek help. Kindred refused.
The arrest is the most recent event that has generated headlines about Kindred. Before that, he earned a reputation as a compassionate man whose work went beyond student government functions.
Kindred has been heavily involved as an advocate for foster children’s rights. A former foster child himself, Kindred worked on several projects with the Oregon Foster Youth Connection, including drafting legislation that created the Oregon Foster Children’s Bill of Rights. In June 2013, he provided testimony to ensure its passage. The bill called for the creation of an ombudsman’s office, where foster children can call if their rights are being threatened.
That’s Darin Mancuso’s job now.
“Patrick’s advocacy work was instrumental in many areas for Oregon’s foster youth,” Mancuso wrote in an email to the Emerald. “On several occasions, Patrick discussed his role and passion about the Bill of Rights and children in foster care.”
Kindred also spent last summer facilitating workshops for OFYC.
“He was there helping youth express their concerns and helping them turn those concerns into legislative ideas for the 2015 session,” Program Director Lisa McMahon said. “He motivated youth to stand up for what they wanted and he was always willing to listen to what they had to say.”
Western Washington University student Heather Heffelmire met Kindred last July at the United States Students Association Congress, where Kindred was elected vice chair for the People of African Descent. They spent several days drafting campaigns and speaking about issues regarding students.
“I was moved by Patrick’s story, his determination, his drive, his spirit and his care and dedication to his community,” she said. “Patrick has been an inspiration to many at my school a whole state away in Washington.”
On campus, Kindred is involved with the Black Student Union and Pipeline to Higher Learning. He helped charter the UO, OSU and PSU chapter of the Rho Beta platform for fraternity Alpha Phi Alpha. This year, he worked with the Campus Planning Committee and organized rallies centered on police brutality.
While Kindred remains in jail, friends and family can only wait. In the meantime, their support shows no sign of faltering.
“He is only 22-years-old and has accomplished so much. He is my role model, my brother and my friend,” ASUO Finance Director and fellow member of Alpha Phi Alpha Monquize Dusseau said. “I look forward to being a part of the team that will passionately work together to help him get back to his healthy state.”
Alexandria Cremer, Eder Campuzano and Samantha Matsumoto contributed to this report.
Follow Kaylee Tornay on Twitter @ka_tornay
Do you appreciate independent student journalism? Emerald Media Group is a non-profit organization. Please consider a donation to support our mission.