It is well with my soul played as the casket closed. The alter was invisible due to an abundance of flowers. Grace Baptist Church was bursting with family, friends, politicians, Pastors, and well-wishers.
It was a celebration of the life of Lowell Fitzgerald Hawthorne known as the “Patty King”. He was recognized as a man, husband, son, father, friend, and boss. There was another side of Lowell many got to learn of at this tragic time. He was a Jamaican hero, a philantropist and entrepreneur of one of the top franchisee in the United States of America.
The Patty King is the CEO & Founder of Golden Krust. Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr. spoke of grief on behalf of the Bronx community for the tremendous lost. He continued with fondness about Lowell, “I am proud to have called Lowell a Bronx boy, a business man of the boogie down Bronx, and proud to call him a friend. This man is someone who took a vision and made a business out of it. He not only put food on the table of those who brought the product. But put food on the tables of those who were employed by him.” Ruban Diaz Jr was ceaseless in his speech. He continued. “Lowell was stimulating the local economy with 120 plus stores. This is a man who was at the top of the business leaders. He was not only building the Bronx, but was building the economy in places like Brooklyn, Westchester, and Queens.” The church said Amen as Ruban left the podium.
Stanley Dennis owner of a Brooklyn Golden Krust shares that Lowell paid for his journey from Jamaica, gave him a position in the warehouse, and the opportunity to buy a store. This story is parallel to many who stood to pour their hearts out in love of Lowell Hawthorne. Present was also Congresswoman 9th Congressional district of New York Yvette D. Clarke, a Brooklyn native proud of her Jamaican heritage spoke of Lowell. She said she was scheduled to be in the chambers voting, but bidding Peace to Lowell was more important.
Ephraim Hawthorne the father of Lowell owned a bakery that served family recipes in Saint Andrew, Jamaica. This can be traced back to fifty years ago. Lowell followed dads footsteps, migrated to America, and opened the first Golden Krust in 1989 on Gun Hill Road in the Bronx. What is it about this Jamaican Patty? Something delicious with an iced cold D&G Cola Champagne. My brother Victor Turnquest Jr. went to Alabama State University and we would have many conversations about food he misses. One day he called and said can you please send me a beef patty and coco bread federal express. If you send it now it will be warm. The imperfectly formed pastry shells that break apart to reveal a thin and flaky crust, each layer more tender and pliant until you reach the hefty beef center, mingled with onion, allspice, and chili pepper. The Beef Patty. “We had Bronx Day in Albany. I wanted everyone to understand how it felt to taste a beef patty. I called Lowell and he made it happen,” explained Assemblyman Carl Haste. “We sat for hours and laughed about the time he appeared on Undercover Boss. This is a guy who did something for his community. Remember family, this is not for us to know why because God knows best.”
Many were encouraged by Lowell private conversations. Richard Thomas Mayor of Mt. Vernon shared how Lowell gave him priceless advice about raising sons. “At the time I just had my first son and Lowell spoke of how he raised his sons to help those who comes from behind you.”
Lowell was a member of the first African-American Greek-lettered organization known as Member Boule or Sigma Pi Phi. Sigma Pi Phi was founded in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, on May 15, 1904. When Sigma Pi Phi was founded, black professionals were not offered participation in the professional and cultural associations organized by the white community. Boule means a council of noblemen. Lowell was a part of a fraternity with notable members like W.E.B. DuBois, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., Arthur Ashe, and Thurgood Marshall.
Raising funds to empower the children of the poor was a mantra for Lowell. David Patterson former Governor of New York was friend of Lowell Hawthorne and his family is also from Jamaica. “Golden Krust is found at Costco, Stop n Shop, and Grand Central Station. NYC Department of Education served beef patty’s today in all schools in honour of Lowell. I must say he was outstandingly successful. Who had the ability to help others. I am inspired of all of those achievements. I remember him for his charity and his desire to educate the generation behind him.” Mr. Patterson paused. “By the way there were no tax problems that this family ever had and we will continue with the Lowell shadow of a great spirit.”
This is a man who lived to give. His father Efrain Hawthorne known as “Papa” often said follow me as I follow Christ. Lowell was a spiritual man and a man of God. He spoke of Gods goodness and mercy. Making positive difference in the lives of so many people in this community. Lowell was known for his acts of generosity and how he treated those who really were in need. There was a girl who lived in Jamaica. At the age of 4 she had a blood disease causing her to walk with a bow legged. She was not wealthy, she was not famous, but she was a child of God. Lowell arranged for her to receive medical
help. She came to the United States to establish a relationship with a doctor that Lowell spearheaded. She underwent several operations on her legs as he encouraged her at her bedside to be strong. Each visit Lowell
made sure that he put a little something in her hand. She didn’t have a clue as to who Lowell was. The nurse in the hospital pointed out that she must have been important because the President of Golden Krust was visiting her. Lowell made sure that his daughter Monique was a part of this little girls recovery. Monique would also visit the Little Girl for encouragement. She is now 18 and walking well.
His impact will not be forgotten. “Lowell was a big deal” according to Fred Smith from Jamaica Tours. As the wake came to a closing the Fellowship sang “Goodbye for now as you fly above the clouds.” With ❤️ Cynthia
“Tomorrow is another day.” -Lowell Fitzgerald Hawthorne (May 1, 1960 – December 2, 2017) #lowelhawthorne #thabump #beefpatty