A Tribute to Ray Carmines

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A man who is surrounded by so many loved ones during his lifetime is a rich man, indeed. And, such a man is Mr. Ray Carmines. Mr. Carmines will have his 90th birthday on Wednesday, April 26; while, on Saturday, April 22 (Earth Day) he celebrated with family and friends at the local Ice-Plex. My sister and her husband drove over 12 hours from Florida to Virginia to share in this special occasion. We count ourselves honored and blessed to be included in such a wonderful event in Mr. Carmines’ life. It was beautiful to see Mr. Carmines radiate such joy and seeing it reflecting back to him. Look at his dazzling smile!

The celebration was perfect. Mr. Carmines was surrounded with about a hundred or more friends and family, all of whom were gathered to celebrate his life and enjoy his presence. Mr. Carmines exudes such a beautiful and positive attitude. He has been a part of my family’s life since I was about ten years old when we first moved a couple of houses down from him in our neighborhood in Poquoson. He has always been a very caring and generous man.

Mr. Carmines has always been and continues to be active in the community, a loving father to his four daughters, a great friend and neighbor and a man of God. He is one of a few I have known in my life to truly live his life in the spirit of Jesus Christ with a benevolent and altruistic heart. He has never has had a negative word to say about anyone; furthermore, he always seems to have a smile on his face and joy in his heart. I do not even recall ever seeing him unhappy. He is one who chooses to mindfully live his life in bliss. Not only does Mr. Carmines snow ski whenever he gets a chance, but he is also champion ice skater/dancer, which is the one of the reasons why we celebrated his birthday and life at the Ice-Plex.

The Ice-Plex was the perfect place to accommodate everyone. Many of his guests share the same enthusiasm for ice-skating as Mr. Carmines. It was such a delight to see everyone relaxed and having a great time. There was plenty of wonderful food, drink and birthday cake.

One of my favorite parts of the celebration was playing BINGO using words that celebrated Mr. Carmines’ life such as: Virginia Tech (his alma mater), ice skating, Poquoson, snow skiing, maroon and orange (school colors), and football.  In the spirit of love and generosity, everyone had the opportunity to win at least once (many won twice or more); furthermore, prizes were available, wonderful tokens that helped to mark the occasion.

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With or without prizes, we ALL felt like WINNERS! The positive energy, warmth and love that filled the ice complex could have melted the ice. I hope these words convey at least a fraction of delight and joy that we experienced this past Saturday. Mr. Carmines is a magnificent person, a kind, compassionate soul and a gift to the world. May he have 90 more glorious years.

All rights reserved. ©2017 by A. K. Orobko

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