Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Remembering Edward J. Papa

How do you remember a man who you never met?

When I read about him, I wish I could have known him. I wish I could be more like him.

Eddie Papa was taken from this world at 47, the husband of Patti Papa and the father of Michelle, Maggie, Elizabeth and Kacee. The son of the late Charles A. and Genevieve K. Papa. Brother of Charles, Marianne, Catherine, and his twin brother Michael. Son-in-law of James and Gail Nick.

A Vice President and Partner at Cantor-Fitzgerald.

A graduate of Chaminade High School and Boston College.

But those are just facts.

Eddie Papa was so much more than that:

He was always smiling. When his friends remember him, that is the first thing they mention. He had a handsome, infectious smile.

Eddie was unflappable. He never showed signs of a temper. A friend from work said he was a better manager because when he was about to "lose it" he would think,

How would Eddie have reacted?" And I would immediately calm down…and sometimes smile!
He was always helpful. He was a mentor and a role model at Cantor Fitzgerald. During the 1993 bombing of the World Trade Center, he carried a disabled elderly woman down ten flights of smoke-filled stairs.

He could carry on a conversation with anyone. Perhaps he perfected that skill when he was a taxi driver. And he never had a bad word to say about anyone.

He was a great cook who could also recommend good restaurants, and yet most stories seem to come back to the "Eddie McMuffins." They were made at any hour, day or night, whenever they were requested.

He was a deeply committed Roman Catholic. "As eucharistic ministers at St. Dominic’s Church in Oyster Bay, both Eddie and Patti usually could be seen at the 5 p.m. Saturday Mass distributing communion."

Endlessly proud of his daughters, as they were of him. His daughters’ friends wanted their parents to become friends with him.

He was a devoted husband. Patti said they were "an absolutely perfect fit."

And not so great at golf, but still loved the game as much as his friends loved golfing with him.

"He was the kind of guy you just liked being around."

"A man they could model the rest of the world with."

Eddie Papa was a man who left an impression on all the people around him. His smile, his kindness, his generosity gave other people strength, hope, and happiness. He cared for others and they cared deeply for him.

It is sad to think of having to survive having lost a person from your life who was so wonderful. My heart goes out to his wife, daughters, family, and friends.

But even just reading a few articles and tributes to him, I feel like I’ve gotten to know about a great man. Someone I would have been honored to work with or be friends with. Someone I hope I can learn from.

Cantor Families Memorial
No experience prepares for pain of personal loss

1 comment:

Teena in Toronto said...

Thank you for your tribute!

I posted one too.