Edwardses presented retirement certificates

GENERAL JOHN GOWANS presents retirement certificates to Commissioners David and Doreen Edwards as flag bearers Lt. Colonel Mervyn Morelock (l) and Major Raphael Mason (r) look on.

During the final service of the great commissioning weekend, General John Gowans presented retirement certificates to the West’s Territorial Leaders Commissioners David and Doreen Edwards.

Gowans commented on the excellence of the Edwards’ team ministry over the almost 90 years of combined service in appointments in the Caribbean, International Headquarters and the United States. He first presented a retirement certificate to Doreen with praise and commendation for her steadfast commitment and love for people. He then presented the certificate of retirement to David with comments on his steady hand and courage.

A video presented highlight images of their careers. “They communicate dimensions of faith that remind us of some the great biblical leaders of the past,” the narrator stated. “There is no uncertain sound in the power of their message nor in the performance of their lives. They go about their duties with great courage and dignity ­ without fanfare ­ humble in every respect. They taught us to seek a vision for our Army and challenged us to actualize that vision.”

In a luncheon the following day, there was much evidence of the impact of the couple throughout their careers. Major Raphael Mason of the Caribbean Territory spoke of their high integrity ­ their continued caring as two greatly loved and cherished people. Mrs. Claire Atkinson, now an assistant sergeant-major in the Coventry Corps and an adopted spiritual daughter from early childhood, spoke movingly of their love for her and the strong bond between them. “I see the love of Jesus in you both in the way you live together and pray together.”

Major Linda Markiewicz represented THQ officers and worked with the couple both in the West and at IHQ. In commenting on David’s strength of purpose and persistence, she referred to him as “the Darth Vader of the Western Territory.”

Gordon Bingham, territorial social service secretary, spoke for soldiers and called the Edwardses “good and exemplary soldiers ­ one of us” and thanked them for their genuine warmth and sense of humor.

In response, both Doreen and David thanked the people they had worked with over the years ­ and spoke of their strong desire to help others make the most of life, and that their greatest joy came from always leaving people better for having met them.

The National Commander, Commissioner John Busby, closed in prayer.

The Edwardses will reside in Ocala, Florida.

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