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Charlotte Amalie
Sunday, February 5, 2023
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Reader Grateful to Charlotte Paiewonsky

Dear Source,
The Virgin Islands have lost a real treasure with the recent death of Charlotte Paiewonsky. She was my first mentor in the working world. As a high school student in the mid-70s, she gave me a job at Riise’’s Gift Shop that came with amazing exposure to the world of duty-free shopping and tourism, considerable responsibility for a kid who came to the job with little experience, and many opportunities to learn as much as I wanted to about the retail world. She taught me how products were purchased, priced and promoted. She let me work in all departments of the store, including the back office where I really learned the mechanics of running a business. She always let me work during breaks in college, even during the slower months. With great confidence in me, she even had me supervise other part-time employees. But most of all, she gave me the gift of knowing the difference between working hard and working smart.
Although I cringed whenever she called me her “redheaded angel," especially in the recommendation letter she wrote for my college applications, I know she was nothing but supportive of me. I will always appreciate that!
Laurie Thompson
Alexandria, Virginia

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