To the Editor:
In the summer of 1983, David and Lorraine Paul made their transition from South Dennis to Edgartown. Our mother Lorraine, along with her sister Carolyn, opened a small gift shop at the Tisbury Marketplace called Potpourri. It was a lovely shop that hit you the moment you entered the room. It was loved by many; Carly Simon loved the shop’s handbags, Richard Dreyfuss purchased a rocking horse for his daughter, and many other locals loved to shop there.
Unfortunately, our mother took ill a few years later, and had to close the shop. Our stepfather David was very much part of the community. He managed and bartended at the Wharf for many years, and at the Hideaway Pub, and when bartending became too challenging, he managed the Dairy Queen. He could make the best drinks, and his social abilities were above par; he remembered faces, names, stories, and you were always greeted with a smile and a good laugh. He was a people person, and loved the social aspects of his job. In 1999, his last and final job was with the Edgartown Police Department as a special police officer, also known as the ticket guy (haha). A newspaper article was written about him because he had generated over $70,000 for the Edgartown Police Department for the number of tickets he had written. He was fair, and understood the importance of parking to customers and shop owners during the busiest times of the year.
Although David enjoyed his work with a smile on his face and a funny story to share, he was a devoted husband and caretaker to our mother, who had limited abilities and needed ongoing care. He made her laugh and smile during the hardest times of their life.
They introduced to their children the charm and beauty that this Island holds and gave us a chance to experience this wondrous place all year long. We loved spending time with them — from the moment you stepped foot on the ferry, the peacefulness of the Island took over. The summertime was a bit chaotic for them, as each of their children (and their families) would have their allotted week for vacation. We were very fortunate that they opened their home to us.
David with his social acumen introduced us to many on the Island, and let us feel like we were part of something bigger. Although we did not live on the Island, we did feel like locals, since we were able to experience life on the Island all year long. In 2010, they moved off the Island to be closer to their children in the event they needed assistance.
After they left the Island, our families continued to come back, specifically the third week in August. We enjoy most of our days on South Beach, mesmerized by the ocean waves and the glistening sun. We dine and shop in O.B., Vineyard Haven, and Edgartown. Make a trip to Menemsha and Aquinnah to experience the beauty of the Cliffs. If you do decide to venture on South Beach during this time, our marker is the flagpole our brother Tom provides that is adorned with the American flag, and of course a plethora of Patriots flags. Our mother Lorraine passed away in 2013 of pancreatic cancer. David lived the remainder of his life with a smile and good laughter; he passed in January 2021 at the age of 89.
The Island and its beauty are forever in our hearts. The memories are never to be forgotten, and although our loved ones are no longer with us, their era on this glorious Island will always be remembered. We are all so grateful and blessed to have been introduced to this wonderful place.
We are having a celebration of life for David on Sept. 11. If there is anyone reading this who has a memory of David or my mother Lorraine, we would all be very grateful if you could share your experience with us, so we may share it with the rest of our family during this time. Please send your thoughts to KRnotifyme@gmail.com.
On behalf of the Kimball and Paul family