Denny Fraser

It was the building boom of the 1970s that brought Aiken native Denny Fraser to Hilton Head Island. It was the island’s lifestyle that has kept him here.

He arrived in 1973 when his employer, then Daniel International Corp., put him in charge of the field office for the Queens Grant development in Palmetto Dunes.

Margaret McManus

She traveled the world while serving her country as a Central Intelligence Agency analyst for more than two decades. Now, Margaret McManus is focused on making the Lowcountry a better place by giving of her time.

“I always had a sense of patriotism,” said McManus, who is a long-time member of the Daughters of the American Revolution. “I thought I’d work at the State Department coming out of college at American University in D.C. But the CIA proved to be a wonderful fit.”

Larry Bergin

Larry Bergin was no stranger to water while growing up in New York and New Jersey.

He turned his love of water into a career after graduating from the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy at Kings Point, New York, with a degree in marine transportation and an unlimited license as third mate. 

Connor McKinlay

By the time he was 4, Connor McKinlay was steering his mom’s boat up Skull Creek and able to maneuver his way down the May River to the sandbar. It looked like he would be following his mom’s path to a boat captain license.

Murray Sease

In just eight short years, Murray Sease has gone from picking up a paintbrush to showcasing her paintings in two Bluffton galleries and in local art festivals. 

The 57-year-old graphic designer did some illustration work for clients of her small business, Shine On Art. It was a natural progression once she realized that she could do more artistic renderings with a paintbrush. She started painting homes for real estate clients, and her passion for painting blossomed from there. 

Juan Carlos

On April 19, 1960, Juan Carlos Jiménez’s father told the 7-year-old and his 6-year-old sister that they were going on a vacation. 

“It turned out to be a very long vacation,” said the Lowcountry resident, now 64. The trip was really A one-way ticket out of Fidel Castro’s Cuba under the Pedro Pan program. Jiménez and his sister spent the next eight years living in Miami with an aunt as Cuban refugees, eating Spam for breakfast, lunch and dinner. 

Eric Turpin
When you meet people living low-key lives in such a leisure-loving setting like Hilton Head Island, it’s easy to forget that our community is filled with people who had impressive, high-powered careers in the past. What’s also great about our community is that even though, for the most part, we are a retirement community, many retirees aren’t spending their days relaxing or playing golf; they’re working every day and generously sharing their talent and experience with the community.