Dear Raqui and Buddy and Doug and Janine, the Extended Ramsey Family and Friends of Ed Ramsey, from across the USA and around the world.
It is an HONOR to speak at the Celebration of Life Reception for Colonel Ed Ramsey. I am humbled to see and to be among all of you here to Honor Ed Ramsey. I have not seen so much Brass in one place since I left the Army in 1965. Yes, I am a Veteran, but let me be clear, I am Not a WWII Veteran, even IF I look like one.
I believe my First Meeting of ED RAMSEY was ONLY about 20 years ago. It was a DELIGHTFUL Meeting at Cape Canaveral, Florida.
My company, General Dynamics, was launching a satellite at The Cape for Buddy’s company, Hughes. We were celebrating the success and I was “Hosting” the Post-Launch Party.
While greeting the numerous guests, I noticed this Distinguished Gentleman, dressed perfectly, in coat and tie with silk handkerchief in his suit pocket, and sitting with a Beautiful Young Woman, Raqui. I just had to meet BOTH.
We spoke briefly about Ed’s work history, with Hughes and other companies and his fondest memories of living in the Philippines and meeting RAQUI.
We discovered his Son Doug was broadcasting the Financial News in San Diego, where we lived. We met Doug some months later and have become good friends ever since. It took a few years, but later we were delighted to also meet Nadine.
Ed and Raqui introduced us to the Levensons, who lived near us, and we became close friends. Ed and Raqui would come to visit the Levenson and we would all gather together, like family. As you know, with Ed and Raqui, friends do become family.
Over the next few years we became better acquainted, visited with Ed and Raqui in LA, and they visited with us in La Jolla. Over time, we learned more about Ed’s Distinguished Military History. Ed and I shared a few stories and I was certain that some of what I had learned in Ranger School and in Southeast Asia had been based on his first hand guerrilla experiences.
We not only read Ed’s book, we started to give it to our Friends and Family. Everyone enjoyed it. It is Easy and Fun to read.
In 2002, we attended the Wonderful Celebration of Ed’s 85th Birthday at the Regent Beverly Wilshire. At that Party, I had the pleasure to tell Ed that a group of his dear friends and family decided to put up a Black Granite Plaque to Honor Ed at the Mt. Soledad National Veterans Memorial in La Jolla, California on top of Mt. Soledad. We believe it is the largest National Veterans Memorial outside of Washington DC.
Ed was truly excited to hear this, and Humble in accepting this Honor. In August 2002, we held a Special Ceremony at the Mt. Soledad Veterans Memorial, with Ed and Raqui and Family and Friends attending. It was a Wonderful Event, with General MacArthur attending == well,==in the form of an authentic impersonation by David Valley. At one point, the look on Ed’s face seemed to indicate he thought the General had “Returned” to Honor him.
You can see a replica of Ed’s Plaque on the table here on display. It is one of a kind, with Ed sitting on his horse. Ed’s Plaque holds a Place of Honor, among 3,400 plaques that honor US Military Veterans, from All Services and from All Wars and Conflicts since the Revolutionary War. Ed’s Plaque is joined on the Walls of this Memorial by 3 Presidents, 12 Medal of Honor Holders, numerous Generals and Admirals as well as Distinguished and Ordinary Veterans of the USA. He is there with several other famous names like, Bob Hope, Jimmy Stewart (who served 25 yrs in the USAF, which most people do not know), Cliff Robertson, Glenn Miller, Admiral Hulsey, General Patton, Audie Murphy and many others.
With all of this Recognition and the Honors given to him, Ed has always remained Humble and Understated. He often explained that he chose to go to Manila so he could “Ride Horses, Play Polo and Dance with the Ladies”. He Never Saw Himself as a HERO, although ALL of us did. He often said, “The real Heros were the Filipino People”.
Ed was always Quick to State, He Loved His Filipino Scouts and ALL of the Filipinos that Kept him Alive and Protected him from the Japanese Military.
In is book, “Lt. Ramsey’s War”, he gave More Credit to his Fellow US Officers and Soldiers and Clearly Highlighted the Filipino Guerrilla Fighters that Served With Him and Protected Him.
IF Ed could speak to us today, he would remind Us to HONOR those that fought along side him.
I am Certain that All of us here today know the Heroic Military Achievements of Ed Ramsey, And We Should Remember Him for those Accomplishments.
However, we should Not Overlook the Fact that he was a Devoted Husband and a Proud Father and a Loving Grand Father as well.
LET US ALL REMEMBER ED RAMSEY FOR NOT JUST WHAT HE ACCOMPLISHED,
BUT ALSO FOR WHO HE WAS AND WHAT HE WAS.
A DEAR FRIEND TO ALL OF US HERE TODAY.
WE SHALL ALL MISS HIM.
Lt. Col. Edwin P. Ramsey
Celebration of Life Memorial and Reception
Remarks by Ed Ward
Past President and Trustee of the
Mt. Soledad National Veterans’ Memorial