He lived to the fullest.
He loved completely.
He was loved by many.
And, he never minced words!
Hamlet Brosius D’Arcy, known all his life as Bro, never left his roots. Born on a farm near Ft. Worth, Texas, in 1929, he grew up amid snakes, scorpions and a beloved St. Bernard, Barry, that his father picked up from a circus. He was the youngest of three children, Suzy and Jim, all of whom preceded him in death. From Texas, he moved to the small town of Brazil, Indiana to live with his mother, Frances, and grandparents, Hamlet and Emma. His childhood was marked with adventures, as well as misadventures, that he would regale his friends with all his life. A vivid memory of a Mayberry like childhood with characters that no television scriptwriter could come up with, enlivened his life and those with whom he shared it.
He attended Castle Heights Military Academy in Lebanon, Tennessee, and then Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois. His grandfather believed if you grew up in a small town, you should go to a large city for education. After graduating and working for his grandfather in Brazil, he went to New York and was hired by Cities Service Corporation. From there, his career path was forged. Ever the consummate salesman, he could talk and work with people from gas station owners to heads of large corporations. Bro had mentors along the way and was a firm believer that no one can make it on their own. He eventually ended up in Chicago as the number one Municipal Bond Salesman for Merrill Lynch. There, he was a strong proponent of getting women involved with the then closed “Old-Boys” network of Municipal Bonds. He helped initiate quite a few successful women in careers in the financial industry.
With his love of his two boys, Jim (Jan, Will and John) and Hamlet (Kristi and Stella), he made the unprecedented move to very early retirement from Merrill Lynch. He lived on an organic farm with his family so that he could be “around” as the boys grew up. From school activities to 4H, Bro was ever present in their lives. It was at that time that he went to work for Edward Jones, thinking he’d work for several years before real retirement. He was a devoted employee for over 30 years first as a retail broker, then as a trainer, and finally as a mentor to struggling brokers around the United States. He developed close personal ties to so many of the Jones “family.” He was as close to the telephone operators in St. Louis as to the President and Partners of the firm, reaching out with his down home humor and good will to all.
The last big adventure was living aboard the “Whimsea” and cruising the waters of the Mississippi watershed and the coast of Florida. Friends remarked that he never went across to the Islands and gave the boat its other moniker, “Whimpsea”. Bro was good natured about it and always retorted, he was the Captain and he had the best first mate ever in his wife, Dede. He was the man in charge! It was the boating years that introduced Bro to the U.S. Coast Guard Foundation, in which he later became a Trustee on the Board. It was his love of Coasties and wanting to help each and every one of them and the Stations, that drove him to his last big avocation, raising funds for the Foundation.
Whether in an urban or rural setting, on or off the water, Bro and Dede spent 46 years together in absolute love with each other. Never a huge fan of public displays of emotion, his love ran deep and strong for the closest to him. He was so proud of his sons and the adventures he and Dede shared, that he knew his life was blessed. Years ago he said, “I’m prepared to meet my Maker. I’m not ready, but I’m prepared.” He is now with all the loved ones who proceeded him. We on the other hand, though prepared, are not ready for our loss.
Donations can be made to the following address:
U.S. Coast Guard Foundation
Bro D’Arcy Shipmate Endowment Fund
394 Taugwonk Road
Stonington, CT 06378-1807
Bro died June 9, 2019, surrounded by loved ones. A memorial will be held on August 3, 2019, 2pm, Sanibel Congregational Church.