A host of friends and family gathered to celebrate the life of Reginald Dudley Trotman last Thursday, March 1, 2012 at St. Mark AME Church, located at 1616 W. Atkinson Ave. with the Rev. Darryl R. Williams officiating. Trotman passed on Wed., Feb. 22, 2012 at the age of 90 yearsold.
Trotman was born in Colon, Panama on July 21, 1921, he was the eldest son of Reginald and Rosetta Hall-Trotman. He accepted Christ at a very young age and attened St. John Catholic Church in Panama.
In the early 1950’s, Reginald moved to Milwaukee, WI and later joined Oak Creek Assembly of God, in Oak Creek, WI. In 1958, he met and married the love of his life, Cherry Ballard. Their union was blessed with two daughters, Enid and Eunice. Their lives were further blessed by the addition of their devoted niece, Edwina Beanum whom they raised as if she was their own.
Receiving his formal education in the Panama Public School System, education was extremely important to Trotman. He graduated from Junior College in Montego Bay, Jamaica majoring in auto mechanics and he was accepted to the Milwaukee School of Engineering, attended the General Motors School of Automotive Transmission and received a degree in Air Conditioning and Refrigeration from Milwaukee School of Engineering.
He leveraged his education with his entrepreneurial spirit and in 1958 he opened two Phillips 66 gasoline stations on 1st & North Avenue and 16th & McKinley Blvd. He later became a home fuel oil distributor and owned the Gold Coast Tap on 28th and North Ave. for many years.
Trotman had an infectious smile, he loved to sing hymns. His favorite was “How Great thou Art.” His hymns provided great comfort for him and all that visited him during his final months. When able, he would sing, “I trust in God” and was joined in by his caregivers.
Reginald was preceded in death by his mother and father, brothers, Jasper and Gleaster and sister Marjorie Trotman.
He leaves to mourn his loss and celebrate his life his loving wife of 54 years, Cherry Janet Trotman; daughters, Enid (Lewis)Trotman-Anyanwu of Mequon, WI, Eunice (Wayne) Francis of Black Jack, MO, grandchildren, Simone Francis, Lura Anyanwu, Leah Anyanwu, Jenelle Francis, Aaron Francis, Melissa Ammons and Enrique Trotman and special niece Edwina Beanum of Milwaukee. Along with a host of other relatives and dear friends.