Members of West Bay’s Ebanks family were among the district’s honorees at the 2016 Heroes Day ceremony recognizing achievement in agriculture. The family made sure the moment was an affair to remember.
Family member Eziethamae Bodden reported it was a truly special day as many close relatives were recognized for their contribution to agriculture.
The late Emily Ebanks, known as “Gramma Emmy,” and the late Ima L. Ebanks, known as “Mama” were both honored with a Memorial Scroll Certificate.
Joseph H. Ebanks, Commander, Medal of Honor, known as “Daddy,” was awarded a Pioneer Insignia and Certificate in recognition of his work developing commercial scale agriculture.
Now 91, Mr. Ebanks started farming in the late 1930’s on his family plantation in West Bay. He purchased his own land in the 1940’s.
Also employed as a seaman, he took care of his grounds when home, and while he was at sea they were cared for by his mother Florence and his siblings.
After completing his seaman years in the 1960’s, he became one of the biggest local producers of a variety of crops and vegetables, supplying the hotels on Seven Mile Beach including Galleon Beach and the resorts in the Barkers area with fresh produce. When Foster’s Food Fair opened in 1980, Mr. Bodden met with the late David Foster and was contracted to supply the store.
After the Heroes Day ceremony, four generations of the Ebanks family, ranging in age from under 10 to over 80, gathered at Ms. Bodden’s home for a celebration, which was decorated for the occasion in a British theme, including a wreath on the front door displaying the Cayman Islands and the British flags, red, white and blue cutlery accompanying the home cooked meal, and printed programs.
“The gathering was sweet as we remembered our loved ones, thanked God for those who are still with us, and reminisced on the good old days in Cayman,” said Ms. Bodden.