September 4, 1948 to December 7, 2011
I spoke with Edwin before I left for Saudi in September and he and I would occasionally drop each other a line on Facebook. Just little notes to brighten each other’s day. I went to visit Edwin a little under 2 years ago. I had never been to been to the U.S. Virgin Islands, so I jumped at the chance to not only visit with my friend but also explore the islands of St. Thomas and St. Croix. Edwin was a gracious host. He loves his homeland so he was just as excited as I to explore some of the places, I know, he has frequented a hundred times. I stayed at a nice beach spot called Bolongo Beach Resort located right on the water. Edwin picked me up every morning and off we went to take in the sights. Some of the places we visited in St. Thomas was Coral World Ocean Park, Magen Bay and Verandas which is a karaoke spot where I and the local girls sang all the top 70’s song until 3 am, while Edwin gloated and told all of his acquaintances, “…that is my friend Gina from Florida!”
I experienced my first seaplane ride with Edwin which flew us from Charlotte Amalie to St. Croix where Edwin’s home is located. What an exciting 20 minute ride! The sight s we visited in St Croix was Point Udell (breath-taking), Columbus Landing, Customs House and the Weight House. We stopped at a roadside restaurant called The Lobster Reef. We ate fish and fries and they had this wall where you could write your name and where you reign. I wrote “Gina C, 4/29/09, South Pasadena, FL”.
Before I departed to go home, I asked Edwin to take me to the Veteran Affairs in St. Thomas so I could meet some of my colleagues. At the time I was working at the Veteran Affairs at Bay Pines, Florida. Edwin made my trip one to remember for years!
I keep thinking how we talk to our friends and family all the time but we hardly tell them how much we love and appreciate them. Edwin always told me. He asked me to come “down” before I took off for Saudi Arabia, but I told him I was running short of time and had a lot of last minutes things to do before I left to go to Saudi Arabia for a year, but I would not leave U.S. soil without calling him. I promised him that I would stay in touch and we did. But you just never know when that last time will be to speak to someone, or tell them how you feel …….I love and miss you Edwin!