On Celebration of the Life
Dr. -Macon ,Moore ferryman
February 17,1908 L4ay 19, 1995
Tuesday, tAay 30, 1995
Viewing 8:30 9:30 am
Service 10:00 am
J41l Saints Cathedral
interment at 1Western Cemetery [Number One
cr. &M4acon _toore Terryman
Dr. Macon Berryman lived a to his mother never waned.
long life, 87 years, scores of years When she became cancer ridden
in which he gave much of him- in later years, Macon moved his
self ... to his family, his friends, mother to New York to enable
his community and to society in him to better care for her during
general, the last three years of life.
That spirit of givingness was Macon attended the public
imbued in him early on from a school system in Lexington ex-
God-fearing Episcopalian family, cept for his senior year at Au-
Mr. and Mrs. James Henry gustine Episcopal Boarding
Berryman of Lexington, Ken- School in Raleigh, North Caro-
tucky, from a military father, who lina, from which he graduated in
though kindly, passed on the 1924. Early on, Macon deter-
stern principles of the military mined he would be either a social
- "respect for authority, hew the worker or a priest, these leanings
line of what is right and wrong at emanating from a culture in
all times;" and from the values of which the Golden Rule "Do unto
a mother steeped in the gentle, others as you would have them
loving ways of a southern lady. do unto you," was rigorously
That gentle lady, Elizabeth drilled in youngsters from the
Berryman (nee Bridges) demon- first grade. This was reinforced
stated other, more indomitable, every Sunday by a minister ex-
qualities whether husband died, horting his flock to care for the
leaving her to hold the family aged and infirm, the sick and the
together. She succeeded admira- poor.
bly with extended family mem- Upon graduating from high
bers all banding together to help school inl924 he immediately en-
in a family-operated business; tered Lincoln University, Penn-
and young teenager Macon at her sylvania, interrupting terms to
side every available moment as earn tuition and to also complete
school permitted. This devotion studies for the priesthood. Obvi-
ously both fields of endeavor the social spectrum children,
tugged at his heart-strings, but the aged, the handicapped and
the profession of social work adults in need of welfare services
emerged the final choice; leading and housing assistance, includ-
him to matriculate at the Atlanta ing immigrants.
University School of Social Work Through the years he never
in 1933. stopped learning, securing certifi-
From the outset, Dr. Berryman cates from the most prestigious
enjoyed a productive, illustrious institutions in the country.
career, heading important social Much as he loved his profes-
work programs and departments sion, Dr. Berryman was not one
in New Jersey, New York and to bury himself in his work. With
Pennsylvania. Within the field enthusiasm, he participated in
he earned a reputation for scru- many civic activities, including
pulous professionalism, espe- those of the Humane Society; Red
cially demonstrating understand- Cross; Boy Scouts, USO, United
ing and patience with young of- Way ... and there isn't a member
fenders; notably as Parole Officer of the Masonic Lodge (he
for New York State's Training authored a history of the St. Tho-
School for Boys and as Executive mas Order) and Rotary II (he was
Director of Sunnycrest Farm for a founding member) who fails to
Boys in Pennsylvania. mention his name with praise.
Rewarding as were those ac- Despite a life-long, heavy
complishments, Dr. Berryman al- agenda, he was still a devoted
ways acknowledged it was in the family man. Fifty years ago he
Virgin Islands he came to achieve had married Dortha Alice
his dream that was to have a Haskett, a registered nurse, and
full hand directing an entire De- together with her and their son
apartment of Social Welfare. Ini- (named for his grandfather, James
tially he came to the Territory in Henry), he did all the things that
1950, requested by Mr. Roy made for a thoroughly happy
Bornn, Social Welfare Commis- home... a home in which neigh-
sioner a move which eventu- boring children loved to congre-
ally led to his becoming Commis- gate for they knew that "Poppy"
sioner, a position he held for 16 as Dr. Berryman was affectionally
years. known to all, loved to see them
It is said that social services romping around his household.
came of age in the Virgin Islands True, Dr. Macon Berryman
under his administration, for he lived a long full life. But that"full-
initiated one program after an- ness" was such that it enriched
other, affecting every segment of the lives of thousands of others.
James H. Berryman
Ging Martinez, Gertrude Boozer
Velmore Wallace, Marvin Smith, Monica Smith
Edmond Blaize, Miguel Dnnkwater
Waden Greaux, Wayne Greaux,
Wynn John, Errol Sebastien, Jr.
Arnold Pole, Krim Ballentiie, Ivan Williams,
John D. M. Woods., Ron DeLugo,
Francis Jackson, Jr., Joe Potter, Charles Parrott,
Mac Davis, John Benjamin
to his many close friends in the community,
including those from the Harmonic Lodge,
Alpha Phi Alpha and Rotary II;
and grateful acknowledgement of special care givers:
Mary Mike, Beryl Edwards, Mariana Battiste,
Elizabeth Henry, Melanie Castor
Order of service
Celebrant: Carlisle J. Ramcharan
Organist: Maureen Walsh
BOOK OF COMMON PRAYER ........................ Page 491
OPENING HYMN ............ Joyful, Joyful, We Adore Thee, #376
COLLECT ............................. ....... Page493
THE LESSON ................................ Revelation 7:9-17
THE PSALM ..............................Psalm 23, page 612
GRADUAL HYMN ........................Take My Life, #707
APOSTLES CREED .................................. Page 96
EULOGY .................. ....... Sister Louis Marie Bryan, S.C.
PRAYERS OF THE PEOPLE .......................... Page 497
HYMN .......................... ........... Ye Watches, #618
THE GREAT THANKSGIVING ....................... Page 361
COMMUNION OF THE FAMILY & FRIENDS
COMMUNION HYMN ................. Let Us Break Bread, #325
PRAYER OF THANKSGIVING ....................... Page498
HYMN BEFORE ABSOLUTION .......... A Mighty Fortress, #688
THE ABSOLUTION .............................. Page 499
RECESSIONAL HYMN .............. Ye Holy Angels Bright, #625
On 'Tribute to Jiacon (Berryman
Charlotte Amalie, St. Thomas
The entire Virgin Islands community is suffered a great loss with the
passing of longtime resident and former Commissioner of the Depart-
ment of Social Welfare Macon Berryman.
Mr. Berryman was a member of this community for more than four
decades. The Virgin Islands was his home and his love for the islands and
its people was evident in the many areas in which he became involved.
His tenure with the Virgin Islands Government began with his ap-
pointment as the Director of Child Welfare under the auspices of the
Social Welfare Department. He became Acting Commissioner of the
department in the late 1950's, and was later appointed as Commissioner
by Governor John Merwin. He held the post of Commissioner with
distinction for over fifteen years.
The Territory owes its gratitude to Macon Berryman. His commitment
to the upliftment, welfare, and education of our residents led to significant
changes in the operation of the Department of Social Welfare, the funding
of federal programs for the territory, as well as the increase of benefits
available to residents, youth and senior citizen programs, and under-
graduate studies at the territory's college.
Macon Berryman was well-liked and respected by those persons with
whom he made contact. His legacy toward the upliftment and promotion
of these islands will long be remembered.
On behalf of the people of the Virgin Islands, I offer my sincerest
sympathies to the family during your time of mourning. May he rest in
Kenneth E. Mapp
St. Thomas, Virgin Islands
I can never forget Dr. Macon Berryman ... just as I can never forget the
young girl burning with desire to do more for people than being a secre-
tary in the Department of Social Welfare, but not knowing how to go
about fulfilling those dreams. I was that young girl and Dr. Berryman, the
Commissioner of Social Welfare, showed me the way. He recognized my
According to Shakespeare's Julius Caesar: "The evil that men do lives
after them. The good is oft interred with their bones." Clearly, such will
not be the fate of the late Macon Berryman. Because the good that he has
done for this community will continue long into the future as his living
legacy. May he rest in the loving arms of our Heavenly Father.
Senator Judy M. Gomez
Dear Berryman Family Members ... I would like to express condo-
lences on behalf of the staff of the Department of Human Services.
Under Dr. Berryman's leadership, significant progress was made in
this Department. His foresight to educate and train native personnel set
the standards now emulated in our programs. And, assisting with the
development of a formal program at the University of the Virgin Islands
wial allow his dream to continue.
He was a positive role model in his community involvement and
professional life. An unassuming man, he earned the respect and friend-
ship of his co-workers and staff with ease.
Our deepest, heartfelt sympathy goes out to the family of Dr. Berryman
from his family at the Department of Human Services. We will always
strive to carry on the work he started.
Catherine L. Mills,
Department ofHuman Services
The Rotary Club of St. Thomas II has lost a charter member, a moral
compass and guiding spirit, the first recipient of its Life Achievement
Award, and most importantly, a dear friend. Our club has been enriched
by his presence and participation; and things will never be quite the same
without him. But for us, as for the community he so loved, he left the
physical and spiritual legacy of a life lived in service to others. Though he
is with his Creator now, we here on earth willbe guided by the life lessons
he gave us all. Though we will always miss having him and Dotty at their
regular table, they will live on in the history of our organizations as in the
history of this community.
Rotary Club of St. Thomas II
In the end, we are thankful that we had the opportunity to share our
lives with Macon. We are much the richer for it. English Masonry in the
Caribbean has lost a pillar of strength, a stalwart. In December 1957, my
brother Robert and I were initiated by Dr. Macon Berryman, passed in
February 1958, and raised in April of the same year. In every generation in
free masonry there are one or two people who stand out. In my genera-
tion, Macon happens to be one. Through his efforts, English Royal Arch
Masonry was revived he was its treasurer for many years. He was the
first one here to receive Overseas Grand Chapter rank, an honor bestowed
burning desires and he guided and encouraged me all the way ... to take
time to get my Bachelor's Degree in Social Work ... to go on to acquire my
Master's and having acquired it, to see him insist I be given the opportu-
nity, in the face of politically-motivated objections, to become supervisor
in the Department. He was my mentor, my role model, as he was to so
Yes Dr. Berryman, I know where you are... you are forever in my heart
and you are in heaven where a man of such goodness belongs. Now, with
your Creator, may you rest in peace.
Senator Lilliana Belardo de O'Neal
Capital Building, St. Thomas, Virgin Islands
I believe I may say without fear of contradiction that those Virgin
Islanders aware of the historical development of governmental social
services in the Territory; and aware of civic services rendered to this
community by private organizations, are much aware of the name of Dr.
former, and his tireless work in many civic organizations, are legion,
simply too numerous to mention here. As for his personal kindness to
people, these examples are also too numerous to list in this short space. To
sum: all who know of Dr. Berryman and his public and private sector
involvements, have concluded he was a remarkable, a truly remarkable
man. And I am most gratified to be given this opportunity to publicly pay
him tribute ... for I love these islands, the land of my birth, so it follows
that I can do no less than to deeply admire a man who came to these
shores from elsewhere and proceeded to shower upon us such love and
dedication. He deserves to live on in our collective memories.
Senator Lorraine L. Berry
Capital Building, St. Thomas, Virgin Islands
It is with a heavy heart that I extend condolences to you on the passing
of Macon Moore Berryman. Although I never worked directly with him, I
will always remember him as being a truly gentle man. Without a doubt,
his decision to adopt these Virgin Islands as his home some forty-five
years ago has benefited this community greatly.
Over these many years, Mr. Berryman saw fit to contribute of his time,
intellect, and talent to the less fortunate among us. In his positions as
director of Child Welfare and commissioner of Social Welfare, the lives of
innumerable Virgin Islanders were touched by this ambassador of good-
will and humanity.
Mr. Berryman's involvement in numerous other professional and com-
munity activities further demonstrated his commitment to his adopted
Virgin Islands home. The many honors, awards, and tributes which he
received over the years also bear witness to the high esteem in which he
by the Grand Chapter of England, on those who have contributed above
and beyond what is expected from any companion. Although he is a great
loss to English Free Masonry in the Caribbean, Macon will be sorely
missed by yours truly and all the brethren at Harmonic 356 and the
campations of Zetland Chapter. On behalf of those brethren and compan-
ions, I offer sincere condolences to his family.
Worshipful Brother John David Woods, P.M.
Harmonic Lodge 356, E.C.
The brothers of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc., Theta Epsilon Lambda
Chapter express our deepest sympathy to the family of Brother Macon M.
Berryman. Brother Beryman was a life member of Alpha Phi Alpha
Fraternity, Inc. and the most revered senior member of Theta Epsilon
Lambda Chapter. He was initiated into Alphadom in 1926 as a member of
Nu Chapter at Lincoln University, Pennsylvania. The brothers of Alpha
Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc., paid tribute to Brother, Dr. Macon M. Berryman,
at their Testimonial Dinner Dance on December 1990 marking the
eighty-fourth anniversary of the founding of fraternity and the twenty-
eight of the chapter. Brother was bestowed Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity,
Inc., Theta Epsilon Lambda Award of Excellence for his wise leadership,
long and caring service, and his many contributions in the task of improv-
ing the condition and welfare of humankind. Brother Berryman will
always be remembered in our hearts for having "A Life Of Giving". A
quote by Albert Pine best sums up the life of Brother Berryman:
"What we have done for ourselves alone dies with us,
What we have done for others and the world remains and is immortal."
Brother Berryman did indeed fulfill the aims of the fraternity, "manly
deeds, scholarship, and love for allmankind." We, the brothers of Alpha
Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc., Theta Epsilon Lambda Chapter say "Rest in
Peace Our Dear Brother" ... the Virgin Islands is, today, a better commu-
nity due to your many contributions.
Fraternally, James Rhymer, Jr.
President, Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc.
Theta Epsilon Lambda Chapter
Dr. Macon M. Berryman was an illustrious member of a valiant line of
men and women, bom outside the Virgin Islands, who adopted these
islands as their home and subsequently made immeasurable contribu-
tions to this territory.
During a long career of distinguished service, Dr. Berryman served the
people of the Virgin Islands in civic, charitable, church, fraternal and
governmental agencies and activities too numerous to mention. He came
here to serve, not to be served. To the end he remained an humble person
despite his many achievements and honors.
The brothers of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc. Theta Epsilon Lambda
of which he was the most senior member, extend deep condolences to his
family, friends and fellow workers. However, even as we share in the
sorrow of his passing we will remain grateful that these Virgin Islands, his
adopted home, became a better place because he passed this way.
Brother Charles W. Turnbull
Historian, Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc.
Theta Epsilon Lambda Chapter
For Macon, a friend always:
Here is but one man
Commissioner Macon Berryman
Not from here, nor born here but Virgin Islander to the bone
He chose the Virgin Islands as his home.
Investing in its welfare
And serving beyond selfish care
Awarded, lauded, praised while alive
Pressing forward an image destined to survive
Forget about from here, born here
And moving without fear
To serve the Virgin Islands and her people from now to all out year.
Yes, Macon Berryman is my name
Compelled by selflessness to serve without pursued fame.
In Sympathy and Friendship ... At times like this it seems so difficult to
find a way to show the sympathetic thoughts that words can never say ....
Still, may it help to ease your loss and bring some comfort, too, to know
that many caring thoughts are there today with you. May you find
comfort in God's love and in your memories of the wonderful time you
shared with us. May it comfort you to know that others understood and
share your sorrow. I will never forget those years you shared with us in a
loving fatherly way.
I will never forget seeing you and hearing you speaking to the children.
Especially when Elaine found those little feet of hers going around the
house in and out the place. Dr. Berryman, we will miss you and your
help to all. You will always be remembered although you are gone.
Now just a word, for Jesus, your dearest friend so true,
Come, cheer our hearts and tell us, what he hath done for us.
The Lord hath heard your prayers, heard your cries and has seen your
Elaine Lawrence andfamily
Waden Greaux, Godson Wayne Greaux and son
Arleen Greaux and son
Jolaine Greaux, Ilivie Greaux andfamily
To speak of my father overwhelms ...
for I can find no words that do him justice
... there are no words magnanimous
enough to describe a man who flooded his
home, his family and his community with
love. I can only say he truly lived by the
precepts of a favored poem hung on a wall
in his bedroom.
Your loving son, Jim
PRINTED BY ST. THOMAS GRAPHICS
EULOGY FOR DR. MACON MOORE BERRYMAN
ALL SAINTS EPISCOPAL CATHEDRAL, MAY 30, 1995
The privilege of eulogizing our dear friend, Dr. Macon Moore Berryman, is for me
accompanied by mixed emotions. I am at once happy to tell the world how my life was
enriched as a result of having known Dr. Berryman as employer, friend, colleague. Al
the same time, I am sad that to me has been given the awesome responsibility ol
attempting an impossible task. For indeed, it is impossible to express in words, no matter
how carefully chosen or how eloquently voiced, exactly what ought to be said in a eulogy
for Macon Moore Berryman.
What Dr. Berryman's life has meant to all those whose lives he touched simply
cannot be reduced to words. Nevertheless, I was asked to give the eulogy, I did agree to
do so, and since an expression in song and dance is entirely out of the question for me, I
shall with the help of God, speak a eulogy, reminding you of Billie Holiday's confident
assertion "the impossible may take a little while." So sit back and relax.
What makes a eulogy for Dr. Macon Berryman well-nigh impossible is that the
beauty, the goodness, the essence of his life showed itself largely, through intangible,
though very real aspects of a truly human person, a person who lived consciously in
concert with his Creator, and who thereby allowed himself to be so animated that the
potential given him was actualized for all to see and to experience. In effect we
recognized in Macon Berryman an honest, faith-filled, hopeful, loving person. In Macon
we encountered someone who was not afraid to do whatever needed to be done at
whatever the cost, particularly a cost measured in terms of self-giving, sacrifice, and hard
When I first met Dr. Berryman, he was a professional Social Worker, having
earlier considered but not pursued a vocation to the priesthood. He was already then,
someone who was fully aware of himself as a creature of God, follower of Jesus Christ,
brother to all persons, and therefore obliged to participate actively in the constant.
unrelenting struggle for justice and peace. At the time we met I was a beginning worker
in the Department of Social Welfare, fresh out of college. With the rest of the staff, I was
anticipating a new comer, a Director we feared might find fault with everyone and
everything. Some wag had told us that a Mr. Bacon Merryman was coming to fry all the
"bad eggs" and to give the rest of us merry-whatever. But as quickly as we got his name
straightened out, just as quickly did we recognize that this new person, MACON
BERRYMAN, was indeed very unlike anything we had been dreading. A soft-spoken,
deliberate person, of sharp, intelligence, keen wit, gentle compassion, qui7 firmness,
dauntless courage, and unbounded enthusiasm, Mr. Berryman began his service among us
as Director of Child Welfare. From that happy beginning he moved,over the years,
steadfastly upward to the top level cabinet rank of Commissioner of Social Welfare for
the Territory of the U.S. Virgin Islands. By his example, his encouragement, his genuine
caring and concern, Mr. Berryman inspired me and many others,during that time of
steady progress to pursue the profession of Social Work and to serve well,not only our
neighbors in need, but also,our community in general. Mr. Berryman provided constantly
the inspiration and incentive for us, and for those whom we served,to be and to give
always the very best of which we were capable.
By no means were Dr. Berryman's contributions restricted just to the field of
Social Welfare or to his Social Work associates. His gifts and talents were manifold, his
involvements legendary, and his honors, citations, testimonials and distinctions were
multitudinous. Dr. Macon Berryman was known, respected, honored and revered far and
wide, despite his humble, unassuming daily life here in tiny St. Thomas. We were truly
blessed to know him as one of us.
The very many impressive and outstanding achievements in Dr. Berryman's life
have been duly noted, recognized and acclaimed, happilywell before his death occurred.
It is for me this morning at his funeral simply to say with awe, with gratitude, with joy,
how wonderful it is that we were privileged to see, to know, to rejoice in, and to enjoy the
presence of our God and Father in the life of our brother, Macon, a man who truly
reflected his Maker's image and likeness. So fe Dr. Berryman's -egy; I say confidently
that he responded convincingly and well to what the prophet Micah urges for all of us in
this passage from Scripture:
You have been told, 0 Man, What is good,
and what the Lord requires of you.
Only to do the right and to love goodness,
and to walk humbly with your God. MICAH 6:8
Now that Macon has gone ahead of us from here to eternity, we continue to offer praise an<
thanks to God for the life and grace He gave to Macon; a life and grace which Macon accepted
and used so well. We pray now for Macon's eternal happiness as he goes for his reward, joinint
his loved ones, and waiting for our reunion there. May he rest in peace. Amen, Alleluia!
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