We said goodbye to Papa Ed. Ed wasn't my father, he was my dear friend's father. But he was Papa to everyone. He was one of those angels who lit up a room when he entered it. He laughed and loved with his whole heart and soul. His Gumbo parties were legendary-no one made Gumbo like him. I remember one year I made Gumbo and he came over and told me it was almost as good as his. I am honored that I have one of his Gumbo pots to remember him by and some day soon I'll be cooking up a batch in his honor.
Those parties were always fun-a room full of friends from all walks of life, friends of his, friends of his daughter, neighbors, co-workers, his harem -the women he worked out with at the Senior Center-everyone felt fortunate to be there. And we would sit for hours and listen to him tell stories of his daughter and son growing up and all the crazy things they did. There was always so much laughter you went home with a full belly and enveloped by the love that was generated. In the summer Ed would do BBQ and not only was he the Gumbo God he was the King of BBQ. Ribs and chicken grilled to perfection by him. Everyone brought their favorite dish and the laughter and grilling went on all day . His living room was filled with a huge big screen tv, his favorite chair and a ledge with nothing but toys for all the kids to play with. The image of him over a steaming pot of gumbo, or flipping ribs or watching his favorite basketball team on tv-those will stay with me forever.
I'm going to miss those parties, but more than the fun I'm going to miss Papa. He was the most honorable, loving caring man I have ever known. He was one of those special people, an angel among us, someone who was just plain good through and through and I will miss him terribly. He was as sweet and pure as the roses he grew and every time I walk through my garden or prune my roses I'll be thinking of him
Good bye Papa, may the angels keep you forever in their love-you will always be in my heart and I will strive to live my life in a way that honors you.