Eclavea dies in crash after friend's funeral

ECLAVEA: Edward “Eddie” Miner Eclavea died as a result of a head-on collision with another car on Route 4 in Sinajana on July 11. Edward Leon Guerrero, Eclavea's grandson, remembers his grandfather as someone who was always joking around. Photo courtesy of Edward Leon Guerrero

Edward “Eddie” Miner Eclavea of Agana Springs was returning from a funeral in Talofofo on Wednesday when his car collided with another, claiming the lives of both drivers. He was 78.

Eclavea’s wife of 54 years, Dolores Eclavea, said going to funerals was one of his favorite things to do.

Remembered by his wife and his grandson Edward Leon Guerrero as a "ga'umessitan," or joker, Eclavea could talk to anyone.

”He was a person that you could just go up to and not be afraid to mess up,” said Leon Guerrero, who was named after Eclavea. “You don’t have to always sit up straight (with him) and be prim and proper. You could just go and talk to him like an old friend.”

He recalled times when his grandfather would joke with nurses at the hospital after a recent surgery, despite being in pain.

When told he needed to eat better, Leon Guerrero said, Eclavea responded, “I’m sorry, it’s just that McDonald’s, why do they have to make the food so good?”

Leon Guerrero said his grandparents were the ones who passed down the CHamoru language to him.

Dolores Eclavea said her husband loved to help people and never had a bad word to say about anyone.

With many friends and family members scattered around the island, she said her husband didn’t care how far he had to go: He went to every funeral. 

“He died doing what he loved to do,” she said. “He's gone. I want him back, but I just have to pray and ask the Lord to take care of him.”

Eddie Eclavea, a retired electrician, was a Knights of Columbus member, served on the Mayors' Council of Guam and assisted in offering Holy Communion at St. Jude Church in Sinajana, Leon Guerrero said.

He leaves behind his wife, eight children, 26 grandchildren and five great-grandchildren, Dolores Eclavea said. She and Eddie Eclavea married when they were 24 years old.

Prayer schedule 

Mass of Intention and rosary will be offered at St. Jude Church in Sinajana at the following times:

Mass will be said at 7 p.m. followed by the rosary on July 13, 16, 17 and 18.

On July 14, Mass will be at 5 p.m. with the rosary at 7:30 p.m.

On July 15, Mass will be at 10:30 a.m. with the rosary at 7:30 p.m.

One crash, two victims

Joe Blas, 52, also died as a result of the crash.

Eclavea was driving a Hyundai Santa Fe on the inner northbound lane and Blas drove a white Nissan NV200 owned by GTA, which was traveling on the inner southbound lane at the time of the collision.

Eclavea and Blas were transported to Naval Hospital Guam, where they were pronounced dead.

Route 4 was closed for several hours after the crash.

The Guam Police Department Highway Patrol Division is investigating the crash.