DIANE PHILLIPS: One death too many, please let this not be real


Diane Phillips

WHATEVER the cause of death, there can be no greater heartbreak than that of burying a child. Children are supposed to bury their parents. It’s not supposed to be the other way around.

For the grieving parent, the pain is intolerable, unbearable, inescapable.

In your heart, much as you try to deny it, you crumble and ache, knowing you will never be able to try to kiss your young son good night again and tell him you love him as he half-heartedly pushes you away, saying “Dad, I’m too old for that stuff,” but deep down inside still craves the love.

Your heart is shattering into a hundred splinters watching a casket being lowered into the ground bearing your daughter’s tiny body, taking your heart and the reason for being alive with it into the gravesite.

There is little wonder we mourn when life is stolen from those who have never had a chance to fully live it.

In the realm of injustice, nothing tops robbing a young person of his or her life and leaving parents behind to wonder, Why? Why did it have to be my child? I loved him so, he was so amazing, he could have done anything with his life. She held so much promise and joy, her smile no one could resist.

Please, please let me live this moment over and let this not be real.

The sadness of loss must cover parents and siblings like a suffocating blanket.

When that unjust death occurs against the backdrop of global disaster, it stirs and awakens us from a growing deafness to the pain all around.

Surrounded by news of hospitalizations and deaths during a pandemic, we are both startled by and increasingly immune to the numbers.

We stare briefly wide-eyed when we learn that nearly two Americans die of the virus every minute.

Mesmerized but not really seeing, we watch the numbers grow, waiting for the spooling to stop and the next news item to begin.

We are weary of the virus and the mutilation of families it causes. The fatigue might have caused us to grow more calloused and cold-hearted than we should have.

Last week’s tragic death of a Cabinet minister’s son woke us back up.

It brought a nation to tears. Our hearts broke for Environment and Housing Minister Romi Ferreira and the entire large Ferreira family when a 14-year old died at home.

Is it possible that tears can produce teachable moments? That as we think about our own children and promise to express our love and shower them with affection even if they pretend not to want it, let us reach out to Romi and the Ferreiras and let them know they will never be alone.

They will mourn, but they will not mourn alone.

They will cry, but they will not cry alone.

The Bahamas will be with them, will mourn with them, will cry with them and will hug them and one day, when they are able to smile again, The Bahamas will rejoice with them for they have gone through the greatest heartbreak of all and they

have survived to know they are loved.

Santa’s Naughty or Nice List

If Santa had time, he’d be rubbing his hands together with the juiciest of Naughty and Nice nominees in The Bahamas this year. Times were tough and that’s for those who did not face the worst of scenarios and ache with hunger. So how did we behave. Let’s take a look and see today and next Friday who’s been naughty and who’s been nice.


First up on the naughty list has got to be the couple whose social season started with a bang and ended with a thud.

You know the ones. They flew into Nassau from a place in New York state where the median price of a home is over $1 million and thought hmm, good to be back in Nassau, let’s have a party or two. So they did.

Problem was it was against the law and the rest of the community in the west where they maintained a home flew into a rage.

Abiding by mask-wearing and stay-at-home Emergency Powers orders, the law-abiders were infuriated, declaring that when in The Bahamas, no one is above the law and they should obey like everyone else (except that bar in Palmdale who ought to be added to the naughty list).

The shamed couple who then had to quarantine because, sure enough, people at the last dinner party tested positive, retreated.

They flew the coop-ed up, supposedly on a private jet, leaving club resignations and a relieved community behind. Naughty, naughty.


Robert Knowles is a very busy man. Husband, father, team coach, owner of Armstrong Technology and Ship242.com (One & Done) with two locations and a host of tech clients, Knowles has been fixing the computer equipment for quadriplegic author Michael Wells without charge for years.

This week, he had to make four trips to the house at night.

Please, Santa, can you spread a little extra niceness reward on Robert and his family?


Shame, shame and more shame on the East Bay Street high speed hit-and-run individual who slammed into one car shoving it into another Monday night and kept careening eastward nearly up on two wheels, never stopping to check on injuries of those in the cars he or she smashed.

One of the cars struck was driven by Fox Hill MP Shonel Ferguson who had just left a late session of the House of Assembly about 7 pm where she had offered condolences to the families of three persons who passed away in the last week and within minutes, came close to losing her own life.

The speeding, out-of-control car was going so fast that the impact twisted the frame of Ferguson’s vehicle, driving it into the tire.

Police arrived and the car was towed. Ferguson was left shaken but said she believes her athletic training helped her reaction time and recovery.


Just when you thought it was safe to go on a cruise again, Royal Caribbean says not quite yet, but we still love The Bahamas, our number one partner, and can’t wait to come back.

To demonstrate that love, they sent 5,000 turkeys to the National Food Security Task Force with a request that some go to Grand Bahama and Abaco. Royal Caribbean is also making the holidays special for children in the Berry Islands where the company operates a top-ranking private island destination. Minister of Social Services Frankie Campbell called the need for turkeys to the attention of the cruise line that already donated $400,000 to the Bahamas Feeding Network this year. Santa, please add the Social Services Minister to that Nice list.


You have to hand it to Sebas. True, anyone who can be identified by a single name (think Beyonce or Shakespeare) has already achieved a certain status. But when Sebas does something, he gives it his all and he does it right. Take the food distribution at the Thomas A Robinson Stadium. People lined up from 5 am for an event that was due to start at noon, but volunteers, including the man himself, were at the ready and cars moved smoothly through. If only lines at government offices worked so well. Since Sebas does not need anything materially, Santa, maybe a pat on the back would do. Or tip your Santa cap to him and say, “Job well done, young man. Job well done.”


JokeyJack 1 year, 8 months ago

"To demonstrate that love, they sent 5,000 turkeys to the National Food Security Task Force with a request that some go to Grand Bahama and Abaco."

The last thing we need in the Bahamas right now is more turkeys :-) :-) :-)


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