Today my Government and the people of the British Virgin Islands join with others across the Greater Virgin Islands in mourning the passing of U.S. Ambassador Terence Alphonso Todman [pictured here].
Born 13th March, 1926, in St. Thomas, USVI to a BVI mother, Rachael Anne Callwood of Carrot Bay and Alphonso Todman of St. Thomas, also with BVI family connections, Ambassador Todman was well-known and highly regarded in this community for his distinguished diplomatic and public service career. Indeed this Territory took great pride in knowing that one of its descendants had been appointed by US presidents to serve in various ambassadorial positions.
During his illustrious career, Ambassador Todman served for over four decades; under six United States presidents in six United States embassies in countries such as Guinea, Republic of Chad, Spain, Costa Rica, Argentina and Denmark. The Organization of American States (OAS) had also named him as special envoy to promote democracy in Haiti. Additionally, Ambassador Todman served as an advisor to former USVI Governor Roy L. Schneider and as a consultant to both U.S. and Argentinean companies.
Ambassador Todman regularly visited the BVI to see his daughter Patricia Rhymer Todman and son in-law Elihu Rhymer, and also spent time with other family and friends.
I recently had the privilege of paying tribute to Ambassador Todman when he was honoured by the League of British Virgin Islanders in St. Thomas for his sterling career and stellar contributions locally and internationally. The BVI community and the diplomatic fraternity have indeed lost a global giant whose presence will still be felt for generations to come. He will be dearly missed.
I am pleased to learn that in Ambassador Todman’s honour, USVI Governor John de Jongh has directed that flags on all public buildings in the U.S. Virgin Islands be flown at half-staff until sunset of the day of his interment. This is indeed a fitting tribute for a man who served the world with such dignity and integrity.
On behalf of the Government and people of this Territory, and my wife Lorna, I extend condolences to his widow Doris and children Terence Jr., Patricia, Kathryn and Michael during their time of bereavement on the passing of a diplomatic giant.
Dr. D. Orlando Smith, OBE
15 August 2014