Eric Kodjo Addy, affectionately known to his family and friends as Daddy Addy, was a caring husband, father, grandfather, brother, uncle, cousin, and friend. He went home to be with the ancestors on January 28, 2022. He is survived by his loving wife of 38 years, Cynthia, daughters, Erica and Mercy, son, Eric Jr., grandchildren, Whitney, Jasmin,and Courtney, brother, Ken, and a host of cousins, nieces, and nephews.
He was born on July 22, 1940, in Nsawam, Ghana. He and his brother, Ken, were raised by their mother, Florence Mensah in Accra, Ghana where he attended both Middle School and High School.
When he left Ghana in 1965, he made New York City his home. Native New Yorkers did not know the streets of New York better than Daddy Addy. No matter the destination, Eric always knew a shortcut. When driving around the city with him, it would not be surprising to hear him say “I used to live near here.” His family often joked there was nowhere in NY that he hadn’t lived or visited.
Although he had not lived in Ghana for over 60 years, it always remained near and dear to his heart. He loved to share stories of home with everyone he met. One of his favorite topics was Ghana’s independence and the leadership of Kwame Nkrumah. He also loved to discuss the inaccuracies found in books like Roots and other narratives about Africa.
Aside from his family, one of his proudest accomplishments was working for Pan American Airlines both in Ghana and the United States. Through his employment, he traveled across the world. He also worked as a photographer, guard at the Ghanian Embassy to the United Nations, and a cargo agent for Continental Airlines.
Eric was a man of many interests and talents. He grew up playing soccer and dreamed of playing professionally. Although he never made it to the pros, his love of the game never waned. He loved to show everyone that he still had skills. As recently as this past summer, he was in the backyard kicking a soccer ball and practicing headers with his grand-nephew, Andrew.
At celebrations hosted by family and friends, he would often serve as the unofficial photographer. The next time you saw Eric, he would slip you an envelope filled with beautiful candid photographs that you had no idea he had taken.
Nothing pleased him more than to have people over for a meal and to prepare foods native to his homeland. Countless friends can now say that they love kenkey, shito, tomato gravy, peanut soup, curry goat (Ghanian style), and killy willy, because of a meal they shared with the Addys.
There was nothing that he could not grow. His home was filled with beautiful plants, and he often brought back to life the plants of friends who, unlike him, were not blessed with a green thumb. His love of gardening also extended to his well-manicured lawn and vegetable garden, where he regularly grew tomatoes (which he used to make his infamous tomato gravy), peppers, lettuce, and cucumbers.
Each day, from his seat on the front porch, he greeted his friends and neighbors. Although we will miss those daily greetings and his dazzling smile, we know that he is at peace and partying with the ancestors. Until we meet again.
To send sympathy gifts to the family or plant a tree in memory of Eric Kodjo Addy, please visit our tribute store.