The Center of Five Families
Edward J. Papa, 47, was lost Sept. 11. Not one, but five families were devastated.
It started after graduation from Boston College in 1976. Mr. Papa and four friends went to Cape Cod for a vacation. Then came girlfriends, wives, kids. They moved the gatherings to Martha's Vineyard. The group never missed a summer -- 25 consecutive vacations together. The children, including Edward and Patti Papa's four daughters, became de facto cousins.
One of the five friends, Russell Hawkins, called Mr. Papa the focal point of the gatherings. "He made everybody feel good," he said. "He was a subtle creator of good times." He did that partly through food -- one of Mr. Papa's great affections was for cooking and taking his friends on restaurant expeditions. Golf was his other great pursuit. "He stunk at the game of golf, but he absolutely loved it," Mrs. Papa said.
The circle of friends exploded outward from that original five over the years, Mrs. Papa said. Many worked with him at Cantor Fitzgerald, where no one could remember seeing Mr. Papa lose his temper.
His brother, the Rev. Charles E. Papa, said Mr. Papa was a deeply committed Roman Catholic who respected others' beliefs. He also helped people, including the elderly woman he carried down 10 flights of smoke-filled stairs in the 1993 attack on the trade center.
With the girls nearly all out of the house in Oyster Bay, it had been time to buy a summer place, Mrs. Papa said. On the Vineyard.
Profile published in THE NEW YORK TIMES on December 15, 2001.
PAPA-Edward J. On September 11, 2001 at the World Trade Center. He was 47 years old. Born July 1, 1954 to the late Charles A. and Genevieve K. Papa, he was a graduate of Chaminade High School and Boston College. Devoted husband of Patti (nee Nick) for 26 wonderful years. Dedicated father of Michelle, Maggie, Elizabeth and Kacee. Cherished brother of Charles, Marianne, Catherine, and his loving twin Michael. Dear sonin-law of James and Gail Nick. Also survived by many caring nieces, nephews, aunts, cousins, in-laws, and loyal friends. A Memorial Mass of Resurrection and celebration of Eddie's life will take place at his parish Church of St. Dominic, Anstice St. in Oyster Bay, New York, at 10:00 AM, Saturday, September 22, 2001. Friends wishing to honor him are invited to contribute to the Papa Children Memorial Fund, C/O 60 Highwood Rd, Oyster Bay, New York 11771. May God bless all of our families and keep them in His care.
Paid Notice published in THE NEW YORK TIMES on September 20, 2001.