Wilson Oquendo was born in Fajardo, Puerto Rico on August 23, 1950. He became a well known basketball player in Puerto Rico and played in the 1968 Olympics representing his country. He went back and fourth to the US mainland, attending college in Iowa, and finally settling in Worcester, MA after retiring from basketball. In 1994 he met Laurie, who owns Sadie Green’s Jewelry, and a loving relationship as well as a business partnership was forged. In 1998, Wilson and Laurie went to Taxco, Mexico with the idea of working with the famous silversmiths to further the success of the American business.
Over the years, lasting relationships were created with the Mexican families who handcraft the jewelry in their homes. Wilson had friends everywhere, but he had special bonds with many in Taxco, interpreting for “Sadie” and keeping the business and friendship dialogue on behalf of the company.
When The Sea Glass Collection was conceived, Wilson began tumbling the glass which is shipped to Mexico and handcrafted into the beautiful designs you see throughout our sea glass collection. The entire collection is crafted by artisans who work in their homes.
Wilson underwent a kidney transplant and open heart surgery in 2016. In April of 2018, Wilson was finally diagnosed with Amyloidosis. His heart was stiffened and losing function. His late diagnosis increased the difficulty of his situation and later it was determined that a heart transplant was not possible. On January 22, 2019 Wilson lost his battle.
Amyloidosis is a rare group of diseases caused by the abnormal accumulation of the protein amyloid in various parts of the body. This can occur as part of a bone marrow plasma cell disorder (AL), as a hereditary form (AF), an age-related form (senile systemic amyloidosis due to ATTR), or secondary to chronic inflammatory or infectious diseases (AA). For more information on Amyloidosis please visit BUs Amyloidosis Center’s Website: http://www.bu.edu/amyloid/what/
Wilson had the genetic type of Amyloidosis. Most people and many doctors are unaware of this beastly disease. Thank you for helping us spread awareness.
How Your Purchase Helps
With the purchase of this bracelet, $1 will go directly to The Amyloidosis Research Foundation. We sincerely thank you for supporting Wilson and all of those who have been diagnosed with Amyloidosis.
When you shop with Sadie Green’s you are not only supporting a small local business, but you are supporting the individual artisans and their families.
Behind every small business there is a story worth knowing.