Edwidge Danticat on her uncle Joseph Dantica

Edwidge Danticat: My uncle was a minister. He had a church in Bel Air, the neighborhood where I grew up. He also had a sort of clinic, a personal clinic, and a school. He was a prominent person in the neighborhood, a very beloved person, kind of a father figure to the congregation but also to different people in the neighborhood, different young people. So we grew up, I grew up, my brother and I, in this house where a lot of the children were the children of people who had left to work elsewhere. There were no strangers in our house—they were family. Everyone was family. Everyone was related in some way but most of the children in the house had parents who were working elsewhere, whether it was like my parents in the United States or, I had one cousin whose father was in the Dominican Republic and others who were in Canada. So, there was a little group of us, of children with parents abroad, who had been entrusted in the care of my uncle and his wife in this beautiful, pink house in Bel Air.

Edwidge Danticat discusses her uncle Joseph Dantica for the book Brother, I'm Dying.