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Manuel P. Gutierrez Sr. Dies

Manuel P. Gutierrez Sr. Manuel P. Gutierrez Sr. died peacefully surrounded by his family on Monday, Nov. 12, at Gov. Juan F. Luis Hospital. Manuel was born May 13, 1927, in Sagua La Grande, Cuba. In 1951 Manuel received his Doctorate of Law Degree from the University of Havana in Havana, Cuba. On Dec. 21, 1958, he married his long time sweetheart Ignacia M. Beguiristain. From 1959 Manuel spent many years fighting to free his native land from dictatorship. Many of his colorful stories that he shared after his retirement stem from that period of his life and are real historical gems. In his younger years back in Cuba, Manuel was an avid rancher, fisherman, hunter and horseman. He loved the outdoors and continued to raise cattle even while practicing law. Manuel was also a basketball enthusiast. He played during his high school years at Belen High school and later played first string for the University of Havana. He traveled to many countries in Central and South America and also through the United States representing the University of Havana at collegiate tournaments.
In 1967 Manuel came to St. Croix to visit a friend, but he never left; instead, he sent for Ignacia and the children, and St Croix became the family’s permanent home. Manuel loved St. Croix and its people. On St. Croix he continued to enjoy fishing, boating and the general pleasure of being on the water. A passion he passed on to all of his children.
During his working years on the island, Manuel became a successful businessman but in 1988 was forced into early retirement by a life changing accident. Over the past 24 plus years since his retirement you would be able to find Manuel visiting his many friends throughout the island but particularly in the towns of Christiansted and Frederiksted. You could often find Manuel happily chatting and telling stories of his full and blessed life. He always had a quick smile and was known for his gentle, calm and engaging manner.
Manuel is survived by his wife of 53 years, Ignacia M. Gutierrez; daughters: Patricia Worede, Ana Gutierrez Wittmann and Maria Gutierrez Lapone; son, Manuel P. Gutierrez Jr.; sons-in-law: Yohannes Worede and Henning Wittmann; grandchildren: Macaela Worede, Alexandra Worede, Tea Wittmann, Eva Luna Wittmann, Patrick Lapone Jr., Gabriela Lapone, Andrea Gutierrez and Alexander Gutierrez; brothers: Fausto Gutierrez and Miguel Gutierrez; sister, Margarita Beguiristain; and many other relatives and friends too numerous to mention.
A memorial service will be held at 3:15 pm on Friday, Nov. 30, at Holy Cross Church in Christiansted. In lieu of flowers, please make donations to Catholic Charities of the Virgin Islands.
Professional Funeral Services Entrusted to James Memorial Funeral Home Inc. Located at 6AA La Grande Princesse Telephone: 718-8663 Fax: 718-8661

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