A Turtle’s Tribute:
Rodney was born November 8, 1956 in Fort Worth. He graduated from The Oklahoma Baptist University.
From Rick Webb:
With the sudden passing of my partner, Rodney Edwards, the love and support in my life was taken from me in an instant. I will never forget the paramedics working on him in our bed. Nor will I forget him coming back to me just long enough to say “Wow, I just had the most beautiful dream!” as he drifted off never to return.
As he was taken away from our home, I followed behind praying the entire way. After arriving at the emergency room, I waited for what seemed like an eternity. Finally, a doctor and nurse appeared and began explaining how they tried to keep him on this earth, but were unable to – the reality hit with an emotional explosion.
Everyone left the room to allow me to comprehend what had just occurred. After a short amount of time, the nurse that delivered the original news, returned with another nurse to assist me in making some very quick and difficult decisions.
As is turned out, the two nurses were in fact a couple themselves, attended the Cathedral of Hope church, and were able to fully understand the impact his passing was having on me. They assisted me in seeing Rodney one more time before he was prepared to be taken away.
As I kissed him for the last time, and touched his lifeless body I begin to feel so alone. I was asked to leave the room to make a decision regarding what funeral home to deliver him to… what a decision. A minister in the room offered a suggestion, and the two nurses confirmed it. The funeral home turned out to be owned and operated by two gay men.
The next day, the calls and support from friends and my new TCC “family” started. I was overwhelmed by the support and genuine feelings of concern. As I sat making funeral arrangements, the task of making a casket decision became overwhelming. I stood in the “selection room” crying, my phone rang and I don’t even know what caused me to answer it… it was Wayne from the chorale. Wayne asked what I was doing, and then informed me that he worked in the funeral business and assisted me in making a selection.
I arrived early the day his body was available for viewing, had some private time with him and shared my thoughts of how much he meant to me. As I sat down and composed myself, I realized that the funeral home was playing music from the Turtle Creek Chorale. I quickly looked up at Rodney, dressed in his TCC tuxedo, burst out in tears and just knew he was with me and was in eternal peace. I’m convinced he was with me from the moment he passed, through all the difficult decisions, and will continue to be with me forever.
The funeral had touches of the TCC everywhere. Don, your singing was absolutely beautiful… I continue to hear the songs in my mind. Lamar, thanks so much for playing the piano. To everyone that attended, to all of you that have sent emails, provided prayers, volunteered your homes for out-of-town visitors, asking about food, sent flowers and cards, opening your homes for me to spend the night… I don’t know how to even begin to thank you. I was overwhelmed with the number of people that attended the viewing and funeral. It seemed like every time I looked up at someone, it was a TCC member. It’s just so hard to convey into words how much you have touched my life.
From Don Kennedy
Rodney was my choir buddy. We sat together every Tuesday night. I looked forward to his good-natured taunts, orneriness and consistent up-beat attitude. I felt like his musical support. He made me feel needed.
Rodney told me of his heart problem when we first met. I realized the severity of his situation and realized I might be developing a new friendship that might end too soon. But following Rodney’s example, I embraced this new relationship without fear.
Rodney is my first personal chorale loss. His passing came much too soon. But I am so grateful for his friendship. Rodney opened my heart again. I am a happier person to have know him.
From Troy Heine –
Rodney was my Big Brother when I joined the Chorale on January 19, 2003. I sang beside him at the Christmas Concert just a couple of weeks ago and I can’t believe he’s gone. He was a kind an soft spoken guy with a sense of humor that could sometimes be a little raunchy which made him fun to be around. I’m holding in my hand the Turtle pin Rodney gave me at the Celestial Concert. I will cherish it now all the more. Rest well Rodney.
From Hope Ginani
Rodney had a great impact in my life..he worked with me at American Airlines..and everyday we sat together. He was supportive and loving. He got me through some tough times. I will always be greatful to Rodney. I will truly miss him, for his memory will always be a part of me. I love you Rodney.
From Mary Starkey with love
To Rodney, whom I have know for 13 years at American Airlines. You have followed me from the AAdvantage department to Group Travel, then you went your separate way to AA.com. You made me feel like I was some wonderful person at AA. We even sat by each other day after day.. We discussed our families and friends and of course work issues. We laughed together about things and we teared up about others. I will never forget two things. One when my son Toby needed a sport coat for his first dance and I could not afford one, you brought him one of yours to wear. Also you encouraged me to never stop living or let my arthritis slow me down. I will never forget your smile everyday at work, and your laughter from the atrium or your creative costumes at Halloween. Rodney I will encourage my son to keep on Ropin’ in the rodeos and to be strong. I will pray for your family. I love you and will miss you everyday I walk into the workplace.
May the souls of the faithful departed, through the Grace of God, rest in peace. Amen.
-Fred Theobald Special Needs Committee
Rodney passed away on January 9, 2004.
Services were held on Monday, January 12, 2002 at Forest Ridge Runeral Home in Hurst, Texas.
Rodney was preceded in death by his father, Martin A. Edwards, and a brother, Dennis Edwards.
He is survived by his partner Rick Webb, daughters, Anna Edwards and Mollie Edwards; mother, Ruby Edwards, brother Randall Edwards; and granddaughter, Samantha Flippin.