Local leaders this week offered condolences to the family of Virgin Islands cultural icon Dorothy Elskoe.
Mrs. Elskoe, a native of St. Thomas, was an incredible ambassador of Virgin Islands history and culture, whose breadth of experience in other areas such as business and community mobilization, leaves us the better for it, according to the Dept. of Tourism.
Governor Albert Bryan said, “It is with a heavy heart that I mourn the death of well-known and beloved educator and culture-bearer Dorothy Elskoe, who touched the hearts and lives of innumerable Virgin Islanders. There are certain people whose contributions and accomplishments make them a permanent part of Virgin Islands culture, and Dotsy, as she was popularly known, is one of them.”
A graduate of Charlotte Amalie High School, Mrs. Elskoe, who was affectionately called "Dotsy", blessed our community as a teacher and public servant and enriched our culture through the "Elskoe and Associates Carnival Floupe", helping Virgin Islanders honor and appreciate their cultural history, while sharing it with wide audiences throughout the Caribbean and North America, D.O.T. said.
Additionally, Mrs. Elskoe was instrumental in developing several components of the Virgin Islands carnival experience, especially those centered around educating and uplifting our young people, including teaching and promoting the importance of VI culinary arts. She also was passionate about developing and promoting the authenticity of the local arts and crafts sector through the Native Arts & Crafts Cooperative, and made lasting, positive contributions to that initiative.
"We remember Mrs. Elskoe fondly at this time of year especially for her leadership in sharing the tradition of Christmas caroling and her famous kallaloo," said D.O.T.
"We mourn the passing of this incredible Virgin Islands culture bearer, even as we understand that because of her life's work, our cultural traditions will live on. As we enter this season of holiday giving and festivities, we recommit ourselves to preserving Mrs. Elskoe's legacy for generations to come."