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Haze Richardson

Sunset: February 2, 2008

When looking at a person’s life in the end, it is easy to summarize their life in one or two words. Giant, visionary, pioneer, saint, wonderful husband, kind man … all of these words could be used to describe Haze Richardson. However, if you were to have asked Haze if he saw any of these characteristics in himself – save for “a wonderful husband” – he probably would not have seen these qualities himself.

When Haze was discharged from the US Air Force in 1964 at the age of 30, I doubt that he would have dreamed of the adventure that would become his life after he borrowed the money to sail to the Caribbean. The latter was certainly not something you would expect from a graduate of Andover or the University of Pennsylvania … a banker’s suit in Boston would have been more like it.

Why Haze sailed to the Caribbean, we will never know. What we do know is that Haze somehow found his way to Grenadines. In 2008 we can easily hop on a flight and be back in New York within 9 hours. Back in 1966, there was no e-mail, no television, no newspapers and virtually no telephones. Haze once recounted to a friend that the only way he managed to keep in touch with the outside world was by reading old Time magazines which had been left behind by guests in their cottages. This was isolation! His only means of communication was by “single side band radio,” hence the name PSV: Rather than using Petit St.Vincent as a call sign, Haze shortened it to “PSV”{{more}}

It may have been isolation in this very special part of the world that allowed Haze to develop the concept of a luxury private-island resort. Somewhere along the way, Haze met Mr. Nichols and convinced him that a luxury private-island resort was a good idea. Work creating the resort started soon after.

I could be here for hours speaking about the history of PSV. However, PSV is a living, breathing creature that will continue; and quite frankly, is larger than any one man. While it is true that PSV is alive, well and strong, it took a man to breathe life into it. Whilst he had the idea for PSV – and yes, that can cause him to be viewed as a visionary – it is the man and his traits that brought PSV to life.

Haze Richardson had no biological children … He didn’t need to have them. Everyone was treated with the love and compassion of a father; everyone was treated with respect.

There is probably not a single other American or person in the world who understood the West Indian culture and mindset better than Haze. He loved his adopted land and its’ people – and dare I say, because of his personality, his respect and compassion the people “loved him back.” This is evidenced by the number of people in this church today.

As a husband no man was as loyal. A story was once recounted to me about Haze. The story goes along these lines: “How did you manage to work as you did for all of these years on an island where the only people around you are those that you work with or are guests?” His answer: “You really have to love your mate.” And Haze truly loved Lynn. You don’t often meet men in their 70’s speaking of their spouses as giddily as a teenager. Anytime you heard Haze speak of Lynn, it was like listening to a 16 year old boy in love for the first time.

Haze was an adventurer, and as much as he loved working on the Island; fixing problems, keeping the Island going, he equally loved traveling the world: Haze was a pilot, which gave him the opportunity to see the Caribbean. He traveled all over the globe, to Thailand. Alaska, South America … there was not a place that he did not go and visit. He loved the world; but he always wanted to come home to his family … the Staff of PSV. When we discuss his family – the staff of PSV – it would it be impossible to give an appropriate eulogy without mentioning Haze’s brother “Goatie” and his son, “Otnel;” both of whom gave him tremendous support over the years. If no one has ever said it to these two persons and to the staff of PSV: He loved you all and you were his family.

Haze loved life! He loved to try new things … skiing in his sixties in Switzerland; even if it caused him to break his leg! He loved the ocean; even though it caused him his life. We can take solace in the fact that he left us doing what he loved. If Haze were here right now and had the opportunity to speak with us, what would he say? We don’t know the specific words; but I believe the sentiment would be along these lines: “Thank you for making my life so special. Thank you for making me a part of your life.”

May I speak on behalf of this Community to Haze: Thank you for making our lives so special: Thank you for making us a part of your life: You will be missed … Your influence over our lives and the PSV community will last forever!

Goodbye my brother.