Patrick spent tender time with Baker in the two years before Baker's death in 1985. In the Foreword to Boss of Black Brooklyn, Patrick recalls details of those encounters. He writes warmly and with judgment. Two decades after Baker's death, Patrick himself would become a political first, the first black governor of Massachusetts.
Patrick is married to Diane Bemus Patrick, Bertram Baker's granddaughter, a successful labor attorney who wowed audiences during Patrick's campaigns for the governorship of Massachusetts. The two of them, when traveling through Massachusetts, would make frequent references to Diane's late grandfather and the importance of his legacy.