Since my first arrival in Samoa in September 1951 to live for seven years, and my many subsequent returns to paradise, I have come to know and love many people from this land founded in God, for whom the twin watchwords of life are alofa and fa’aaloalo.
Of all those wonderful people, I can’t think of no one with a wider and deeper range of memorable talents and personal characteristics than Tupua Fred Wetzell: his love and regard for his fellow humans; his absolute and abiding passion for his native islands, their customs, their history and especially their music and song; his commercial acumen and grasp of detail, supported by a relentless willingness to give anything a go and put in the work to make it succeed.
It has been and ever will be a matter of great pride to me that Fred embraced me as one of his many friends, almost aiga.
His contribution to the proudly independent state that Samoa has become extends well beyond Apia Concrete and Lata Plantation, just as his memory extends well beyond Samoa.
Fred’s place in the pantheon of heroes of Samoa is both secure and enduring. Manuia le malaga Feleti, until again i le lagi we sing together “Samoa Silasila”.