Daisy Yolanda Romaro Park of Cooperstown and Boca Grande, died unexpectedly on December 19, 2011 at Bassett Medical Center in Cooperstown.
Born in Salinas, Puerto Rico, on August 4, 1942, Daisy was the daughter of the late Juan and Virginia (Rosado) Romaro. Sent to the mainland United States as a young child to be educated, Daisy attended a convent school in Poughkeepsie, N.Y., from which she was graduated in 1960. She was married to Robert T. Park at St. John the Baptist Church in Brooklyn, N.Y., on September 16, 1961. She made her home and raised her young family in Brooklyn before moving to Cherry Valley in 1978 and to Cooperstown in 1988.
As a young girl in North Kingstown, R.I. Pike Powers knew that her state was special. Raised in the Catholic Church, with the towns of Jerusalem and Galilee just miles away, and the fishing town of Point Judith just down the road, it wasn’t until she was almost 10 years old that she realized that Jesus wasn’t actually born in Rhode Island.
Growing up as an artist in Rhode Island was exciting for Pike. The combination of landscapes, the changing of the seasons and the beauty of the oceans meant that there was always something new to explore. Her father was an engineer, but wasn’t in her life for long. Her stepfather was a postal clerk, and her mother a homemaker.
Nature had much to do with molding Pike’s view as a youth. It is a view that Florida has helped to renew, leaving her more open to nature, to poetry, and to her own spiritual aspect.
She is a follower of the Tao, the Way, a philosophical system that seeks to bring a person into harmony with their surroundings, and being among so much natural beauty is a blessing on her path.
After high school, Pike studied at the Rhode Island School of Design. In 1988 she was awarded the Prix de Rome by the American Academy in Rome, a prize granted to only 15 artists each year. This allowed her to travel to Italy and explore the city and its surroundings. While she was living in Rome, she often visited the Appia Antica, the ancient Appian Way, one of the oldest of the Roman roads. The first segment of the road was completed in 312 B.C., and the sense of history that emanates from it, the vision of the chariots, the horses, the peasants, and the kings who travelled along it, made it her favorite part of the Roman landscape.
A love of travel, inspired by her childhood reading, has led Pike around the world. She has been in 49 of the United States (the exception being Nebraska), and on all of the continents save South America. Her first trip was a safari in eastern Africa. She takes great pride in the fact that she worked two jobs to pay for everything on her own. When asked what places she still wanted to visit after a lifetime of travel, she answered with no hesitation: Ireland and the Amazon River.
Her travels also took her to Alaska, to the small town of Haines, called “the end of the trail” by the native Tlingit. In fact, it was one of the Tlingit who helped Pike to carve her own dugout canoe from a single log. Starting with a 20-foot long section of red cedar weighing in at 3,800 pounds, she and her teacher worked for six months carving and steaming. In the end, she had her own 160-pound dugout. For a while, Pike moved around the Northwestern United States, and travelled throughout the Western U.S. She hadn’t been in Rhode Island since her early 20s when she returned to the East Coast to be closer to family.
In Narragansett, where her dad kept his boat and often took the family out on the water during her youth, Pike befriended a few of the local commercial fishermen and captains. She was making short videos, and worked her way up to deckhand on the boats. On some boats, she was one of only two deckhands handling as much as 3,500 pounds of fish in a day. It was life changing. For the 50-year-old Powers it was educational, it was fortifying, and it was empowering.
“If I was even 10 years younger, I would have changed careers immediately,” she said.
The streets are full of golf carts with canine backseat drivers, the sidewalks are filled with all ages of snowbirds and, once again, it is Christmas time in Boca. It’s a time that isn’t quite season, but the group of us that are here year-round, or who come religiously to experience an island Christmas, know that there’s a feeling like no other time of year.
To the Editor:
Commissioner Tammy Hall’s office is looking for local artists willing to show their work in her Fort Myers office during 2012.
The space can hold 11 or 12 medium large pieces. All pieces should be ready to hang. There are some flat surfaces to display ceramic and 3D work.
Artwork will be on display for six weeks. Each month will feature a theme.
If you are interested in displaying your work, please call (239) 533-2226 or email firstname.lastname@example.org and include the dates your available and a link or example of your work.
Thanks, Marcy, for trying to straighten out a conundrum, which you set forth in your down on the bayou column in the December 16 issue of the Beacon. As a former Boca Grande harbor master and present Boca Grande Historical Society “historian” I may be able to shed some light on this very murky subject.
According to Charles Dana Gibson in his book “Boca Grande; a series of Essays,” the bayou was dredged about 100 years ago by the Boca Grande Land Co. I can testify that this waterway has been used by the public for the purpose of navigation, and anchoring, since that time. Any testimony that I would give would be based on the Johnson family oral history going back to before 1911.
It’s easy to forget property lines when you’re spending time on a boat, and one of the joys of having one is that you can simply “be” where you are at the moment. What happens, though, if you drop anchor and are told that it’s private property?
An ongoing dispute as to whether or not the bottom lands of the Boca Grande Bayou across from the Pink Elephant are private or public use has come to light again. The waterway is popular with boaters, and many come to drop anchor, spend a night or two in a sheltered place and have close proximity to the island.
The Wyoming representative who was arrested on charges of abusing a disabled adult at the Gasparilla Inn Beach Club on November 23 will not be convicted of the crime.
In fact, charges were never even filed by the State Attorney’s office.
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