It is part of the measure of former Arlington City Councilman Gene Patrick that on Friday, the day before his death at age 72, he talked with the Star-Telegram about a topic that had been dear to him for decades: the revitalization of the city's downtown area.He had been forced to retire from his at-large District 8 council seat in November for health reasons, but that didn't mean he retired from caring about Arlington. Far from it.As always, he had knowledge to share, and he did.The subject of Friday's interview with the former president of Downtown Arlington Inc., three-term member of the Planning and Zoning Commission and 9-year council member was a pending proposal to narrow Abram Street through downtown to make it more pedestrian-friendly. He favored the idea, saying it's important to make downtown "function for everybody."The selfless dedication of people like Patrick nurtures cities, steers them through change and helps them thrive. Arlington is most assuredly better off because he made it his home.A graduate of Arlington High School and what is now the University of Texas at Arlington, Patrick was an entertainment and theme park creative executive for 30 years. The job took him elsewhere, but he moved back to Arlington in 1985 after one of his retirements, opened his own production company and became involved in civic affairs.Besides his work for downtown revitalization, the fruits of which have begun to show in recent years, he pushed for improvements to Johnson Creek, rebounded quickly from heart bypass surgery in 1998, ran for mayor in 1999 and for the at-large District 7 council seat in 2000 before being elected as the District 8 council member in 2003.Patrick's voice may no longer be heard, but his legacy to Arlington will never be erased. Thank you, Gene.