50 years: Two prominent West Bay citizens pass away

In the July 5, 1967 edition of the Caymanian Weekly, a precursor of the Cayman Compass, the following story appeared:

“It is with much regret that we report the death of Capt. Thomas Temple Banks, which occurred at his home on the June 26, after being in failing health for many years. Typical of most Caymanians he took to the sea for a livelihood and many were the ships he skippered, including his own schooner ‘The Banks.’

“He was of a jovial and friendly disposition and was beloved by all who knew him. A God-fearing man and faithful member of the West Bay Presbyterian Church, of which he was one time a manager, the Captain entered into his haven of rest at the good old age of 89 years and 9 months, leaving his widow, Mrs. Martha Ebanks; two daughters, Mrs. Logan Banks, La Porte, Texas and Mrs. Rolin Ebanks, now at home and who has been a very faithful daughter; three sons, Will, Bob and Earl Banks, all of Florida. He was preceded in death by three sons, Denniston, Vernon and Ashby, and one daughter, Floris.

“Funeral service was conducted by Rev. R. Coke at his home, and interment was in the West Bay Cemetery.

“It is also with much regret that we report the death of another prominent citizen of this district, Mr. John Samuel Smith, J.P., which occurred at his home on the June 29, after several months’ illness.

“He was born April 8, 1892, and at an early age, he started out to make a living working at the Florida East-Coast Railway, along the Florida Cays. Then, for years, he operated a business here in West Bay, and was also engaged in the taxi service, and served as foreman in the road construction throughout the community. For many years he served as a Member of the Vestry, and in 1946 he was made a Justice of the Peace. “Being straightforward in his dealings, his advice was sought and valued by many, even from the other districts. He was very active in all the affairs of the islands until failing health made it necessary to give up some of his duties. He was a great lover of the islands and its people.

“Left to mourn his loss are: His devoted wife, Mrs. Rhodelle Smith; four children, Verda (Mrs. Oswald Ebanks), Violet (Mrs. Charles Glidden Jr.), Hilda (Mrs. Alstead Glidden), Garston Smith and wife Gladys Belle; 11 grandchildren, four great-grandchildren; two sisters, Mrs. Redfern and Mrs. Jefford Smith, and other relatives.

“Funeral service was conducted by Elder Will T. Bodden, assisted by Revs. R. Coke, R. Bowman, Mr. Ebanks, Sis. Redley Powery and Elder Raib Arch at the Church of God, and was largely attended. Interment was at the West Bay Cemetery.”

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