We Samarenos gathered on the beach Sat. afternoon to say goodbye to our good friend Joe Potrebenko, who was killed last week in his home in Panama.
We wrote our messages of love and grief for Joe on paper boats. We sent our courage and strength to his wife, Betsy, and her mother Lorraine.
Paco carried our boats by kayak to release them beyond the surf.
After living in Samara for half a decade, Joe and Betsy had moved to Panama 6 years ago, but their contributions to our community survive and they remain in our hearts. A moment of “Sonidos del Silencio” – Sounds of Silence was the name of their home here – was observed.
Many part-time Samarenos, who spend their summers up north, expressed regrets at not being here. I’m sure they are finding their own ways to say goodbye to Joe. We are fortunate to have community here on the beach.