Three generations of politically-aware and savvy Arubans, Mario Fr. Arends, 93, Carla Paris-Arends, 64 and Carluisa Tamara Paris, 34, visited La Cabana Beach & Racquet Club for a lunch-box presentation. They came to share their personal experiences in relationship with the island’s struggle for independence, celebrated with the upcoming Flag & Anthem Day.
The senior Mr. Arends was among island residents who in 1948 signed the petition asking the Kingdom of the Netherlands for the independence of Aruba. His daughter Mrs. Paris-Arends is an archivist. She delivered to the conference room all her newspaper clipping books describing the island’s desire for independence and the polling of the community in March of 1977, asking 26.121 voters to share their wish, whether to remain within the federation of Dutch Caribbean islands or to become independent.
As 82% of the vote opted for independence, Aruba’s status aparte was declared, becoming a reality 25 years ago, in 1986. The third dignitary visiting the resort was Lissy Paris, a school teacher who works with island youngsters, teaching the island’s living history as told to her by her grandpa and mom.
Assistant General Manager Jessica Franken also shared she was privileged to be a student, when Betico Croes, the Father of the Nation and the engineer of status aparte was still teaching school. She expressed her gratitude to him, for inspiring her to get an education, become a professional and work for the advancement and betterment of her island.
Pictured here an interesting lunch box presentation, offered by the department of human resources at La Cabana Beach & Racquet Club.