January 30, 2018
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The month of March is celebrated internationally as Women’s History Month.
ELEUTHERA is emerging as a leading island in The Bahamas due, in part, to an organization committed to strengthening the community, connecting the island and planning for the future. The One Eleuthera Foundation has found a way to be just that - a strong foundation for the island and its residents to grow and thrive - together. It has been so successful many people throughout the country have heard of One Eleuthera. Its motto sets the tone for a mantra the entire country should follow - “Working Together to Own and Sustain Our Economy”.
WHEN faced with the amount of adversity that Karajayah, affectionately called “Jayah” experienced in his life, one may have folded up, given up, or simply accepted the lot he had been handed in life. He could have chosen the mediocre route, just passing by doing whatever was required of him, allowing himself to stay stuck in a past that was so muddy it could have cemented his outlook on life forever.
“FOR every cause, there is an effect... for every action, an equal and opposite reaction!” Debbie Bartlett started out her famous show “Reaction” on ZNS Channel 13 with this quote for over a decade.
FACE TO FACE: It was all so different when police and communities worked together - to everyone’s benefit
I called up an old friend to say happy birthday yesterday, and I realised that sometimes, we miss opportunities to show gratitude and give merit to those who work selflessly for the betterment of their country. Retired Chief Superintendent of Police Derek Burrows is no exception.
In the summer of 2018, my husband and I were attending the Bahamas Bridal Show. We were engaged at the time and it was just weeks away from our wedding.
WHEN Kamala Harris is sworn in as Vice President of the United States of America tomorrow, people all over the world will be watching the Inauguration ceremony to witness history in the making. What a proud moment it will be to see a woman of colour take the second highest leadership position in one of the greatest countries in the world!
WHEN a man decides to pick up a pen and write about love, it can be epic. Often, women express themselves and share their emotions more freely. Society has taught males to suppress their feelings which can have negative effects on their lives. Both males and females should be taught to embrace their feelings and become more emotionally intelligent. So, when Adrianna Munnings told me about a man who was willing to bare his soul onto a page in a beautiful way, I wanted to meet him and to hear his story.
THE Rastafari community has been rocked by a series of recent deaths. These individuals were well-known in their respective rights not only as Rastas, but as people with great hearts and a love for their fellow man. They were bright lights and their transitioning from this Earthly plane has shocked all who loved them, and has resulted in a great deal of introspection and re-evaluation for the Rasta community.
THE year 2020 will go down as one of the most devastating years for the Bahamian economy in recent history. The country received a double blow –- Hurricane Dorian followed by the COVID-19 pandemic. Collectively, we are stunned and in recovery mode. These traumas will take time to recover from, and most if not all Bahamian households have been impacted in some way.
IT’S important to celebrate men! They use their brain, their brawn, their wit, and their love to be heroes. Those who do so much for so many deserve to be honored and praised, too – even more so during the Christmas season. They may be even more vulnerable during this time, so it’s important to be aware of men’s feelings and needs, according to Terence Bethel.
FACE TO FACE: Shaneka’s a role model changing the face – and colour – of the world of women’s beauty
My long time friend and schoolmate Shaneka Neymour has been interested in arts and fashion for as long as I can remember. She has always been creative and different, finding her own way to stand out from the crowd. As a high school comrade, I remember she was inquisitive and fun and, as a woman today, it’s those qualities which have made her a world-renowned designer in hair and beauty.
The name Deidre M Bastian is a familiar one to devoted Tribune readers. She has been the brains behind “The Art of Graphix” - a column in the Tribune business section twice a month on Thursdays.
Elsada Hield is on the road to becoming a millionaire - before the age of 30. A mixture of all the right ingredients came together to bring her to success - timing, sacrifice, dedication, perseverance, wit and tons of passion. While women in America were home because of the pandemic, many were focusing on things they neglected before - like self care. They were taking the time to do things like take proper care of their skin. This is where Elsada was in the right place at the right time - she was on social media with her Natural Glow skin care line.
FACE TO FACE: Alicia and her daughter Ednique were lost - when will we wake up and stop the violence?
A precious eight-year-old little girl is on a memorial billboard at the entrance of Nassau Village. She shouldn’t be there. She should be counting down the days to her birthday on December 12. She should be trying to adjust to the new normal of online schooling and thinking about what she wants for Christmas. But on September 28 this year, Ednique Wallace became the victim of murder. She and her mother Alicia Sawyer lost their lives together in a senseless act of violence that occurs too often in our society.
Women political leaders are seriously outnumbered in The Bahamas – a fact that the Caribbean Institute for Women in Leadership (CIWiL) intends to change. The first step was to establish a Bahamas chapter of this regional organisation.
WHEN you hear of scholarships for students, they are often allocated for higher education or private institutions. In this case, a unique kind of scholarship offering made it possible for three primary school students to get the assistance they need right where they are – helping parents afford books, school fees, equipment and basic necessities.
Spend just a few moments around Sandena Neely and you will find an effervescent character with lots of energy to go around. She is positive, joyful and very involved in anything she sets her mind to do.
As October comes to an end, I wanted to recognise a group that deserves just as much attention as other NGOs celebrating important causes this month.
When someone gets out of the so-called ‘ghetto’ and makes it in life, they often don’t want to hang out in the place they grew up in. They may go to visit loved ones and friends that still live there. But, the ghetto could be a reminder of pain, struggle, injustice and difficulty and going back there can open old wounds.
THE Bahamas has tons of reasons to focus on its agriculture and fisheries industries at a time like this and move this country towards food security. The Bahamas Government has a National Food and Nutrition Security Policy and Agenda for Action (2017-2022) prepared by the Ministries of Health and Agriculture & Marine Resources with technical support from the Food & Agriculture Organisation (FAO).
FACE TO FACE: Belinda learned from her mother - standing up for others and making their voices heard
MANY schools, especially public schools in The Bahamas, had their first day of school yesterday. It also happened to be World Teacher’s Day - the 26th annual day honouring teachers globally. This year’s theme was: “Teachers leading in crisis – reimagining the future”.
EXCELLENCE is something we encourage our children to strive for. We want them to give their all and be their best at noble pursuits that will enrich their lives and the lives of others. We know that if they strive for excellence, it will set them apart and help them to survive the trials of life.
During my years as a full-time reporter for The Tribune, I had the opportunity to not only write for news, but also for features, sports and business. I actually ended up in the business department working under Neil Hartnell as senior business reporter before I left to hone my skills in broadcasting with ZNS news.
Finding food to put on the table has become a lot harder for many families in recent times. There is no doubt the pandemic has led to a downturn in the economy so much so that people from all walks of life are seeking financial assistance and food aid. So when one couple - facing uncertainty just like everyone else - decided to find a way to help feed people in need, I wanted to share their story.
A wonderful conversation with the nation’s top achiever in the BGCSE (Bahamas General Certificate of Secondary Education) revealed that not every high-flying student had the road paved for them. In fact, Isha Raman’s story proves we have to inspire this country’s youth to want to do well – not for their teachers and parents, but for themselves. If they learn of stories like Isha’s, they will see they can indeed achieve what seems like a near-impossible task.
A jubilant personality and an effervescent spirit, Delores “Red” Archer-Adderley has been committed to the promotion of Bahamian culture and art - specifically performing arts - for decades. She is the manager of the Dundas Centre for the Performing Arts, and like curators of theatres and museums all around the world, she is fighting for its survival in the midst of the global pandemic.
FACE TO FACE: A lifetime’s mission to redress the wrongs of slavery and explore a people’s African roots
August is the month that commemorates the emancipation of Africans in the Western world. The people of the Rastafari movement never let Emancipation Day pass without impassioned calls for the freedom, redemption and repatriation of African descendants throughout the Diaspora. It has been decades since the calls first began.
While many are facing tough times due to the pandemic, there are those whose struggles are exacerbated by medical issues and the subsequent cost of getting proper care. That’s the fight that Michelo McKenzie Sr must overcome for the sake of his son, Michelo Jr.
FACE TO FACE: From ‘playing doctor’ as a child, Theresa’s now in the frontline of our battle with COVID
If all is well the latest national lockdown will lift next week. For that to happen experience tells us we will need to have seen a period when there were no new cases. This is what allowed our southern islands to be taken out of lockdown on Sunday.
Bahamians throw away more than $1.5 million worth of aluminium cans each year – cans that could have been recycled and that could have brought money back into the country. With that amount of waste going into the landfill, being strewn across beaches, ending up in the sea and becoming litter on roadsides we have every reason to want to do something about it.
FACE TO FACE: Bahamians’ rushed exodus from Florida and the flights back to quarantine - via hot spot in Freeport
When Prime Minister Hubert Minnis announced on July 19 that the borders of The Bahamas would be closed to travellers from the United States by Wednesday, July 22, there was a mad scramble for Bahamians who were travelling to return home. They did not want to end up in a situation where they were stuck in America for who knows how long until PM Minnis decided to reopen the border.
FACE TO FACE: Locked away in her room for three painful weeks trying to protect her vulnerable parents: one woman’s life with COVID
A Bahamian woman who survived the deadly COVID-19 virus today shares her story and applauds Prime Minister Hubert Minnis’ decision to close the borders to US travellers in order to preserve the health and safety of Bahamians.
The Independence holiday was a good time to sit and reflect on our nation, look at the good and the bad, and determine what we can do individually, as well as together, to help make our country great.
This special Independence edition is dedicated to the very first person I ever saw face to face in this entire world – my mother. As I reflect on my country, its achievements, and where it needs to go in the future, I continue to honour those who have paved the way. My mother Agatha Watson is among them.
FACE TO FACE: A remarkable life detailed in a folder telling the story of one of our nation’s builders
The “Father of Paediatrics” in The Bahamas was laid to rest this weekend, signalling the passing of yet another of our great nation builders. Time goes on, as it must, but it is right to take time to honour those who paved the way, paying tribute to their life and work.
Leonard Joseph ‘Boston Blackie’ Miller spent his last Father’s Day on Earth, this Sunday past. His life and legacy is one of a nation builder in athletics in The Bahamas, and mentor to many.
Growing up, I attended Holy Cross Anglican Church with my family. For most of my years there, the late Canon Neil Roach, affectionately called “Father” by many, was rector. He was assisted by a priest who found a way to connect with the young people of the church and make a difference.
Two police officers in Hollywood, Florida took the time to speak with me over the weekend about the protests happening in America and throughout the world.
Marching, rioting, looting… anger, frustration, shouts for equal rights and justice…. fires, tear gas, rubber bullets… angry mobs, demonstrations and confrontation. It looks like the scene of a war zone in more than 40 states across America as people have taken a stand against the senseless killing of yet another black man at the hands of the police.
Learning how to adapt, learn new skills and become more internet savvy are critical skills to have as we traverse this COVID-19 pandemic.
The first time I heard Drew Harmony sing, I was in awe. His voice is smooth and sultry and I was immediately taken back to a time when R&B was in its prime. His buttery yet bold voice made me stop and listen and I have been a fan ever since.
He is one of the most beloved track stars in the country. He is a husband, father and a coach, having mentored hundreds of kids in The Bahamas and in America. He has travelled the world and has stood on an Olympic pedestal with a gold medal.
This is a trying time for everyone, especially those who are facing unemployment and an uncertain future. But people are reaching out, pulling together and showing they care in order to cope with the crisis caused by COVID-19. Some have called on the church to play a bigger role in helping not only their members, but their community and one church is doing just that.
While schools throughout the country have adapted to the COVID-19 pandemic and subsequent lockdown by moving their classes online, one school has found that years of providing an online learning experience for its students is paying off.
I’m always impressed when I learn about Bahamians doing big things in other parts of the world. It reminds me of how great we are as a people, even though we come from a small archipelago, sometimes represented as just a dot on a map.
A lockdown amid a global pandemic could be a good thing if you look on the bright side. There’s an opportunity to get proper rest, start a new hobby, connect with your family like never before, or take time for self improvement.
The global pandemic created by the Covid-19 virus has resulted in fear and anxiety for many as people the world over face uncertain times. People are taking measures to protect themselves, including distancing themselves from others, wearing masks and gloves.
Churches all around the world are embracing the digital age like never before in the face of the global pandemic caused by the Covid-19 virus. Church leaders are faced with finding new ways to reach their members as the pews are not filled for the first time in recent history.
Dr Shanika Hill is happy that she got to fulfil her mission to come to The Bahamas and help hundreds of diabetic patients before the Covid-19 pandemic, which has now changed the face of healthcare in the world. Earlier this month, Shanika led a team of 14 healthcare professionals and students from Miami to Nassau to take part in a special campaign to help decrease the amount of local diabetic patients undergoing amputations.
March is celebrated as Women’s History Month. Coming on the heels of last week’s tribute for International Women’s Day, I decided to highlight another phenomenal woman. This time, I feature Marisa Mason Smith, a woman who has done so much for the advancement of women in this country, and so much for her fellow citizens on the whole, that she deserves her flowers today.
This week began with the recognition of International Women’s Day. It’s a global day celebrating the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women. In honour of this day, I decided to interview a woman who has achieved so much so early in her career, that she is nothing short of amazing.
When I was a high school student attending St Augustine’s College (SAC), I met Alpheus “Hawk” Finlayson. He is an alumni and remains active in the lives of some of the students who came after him. I am one of them. From that time until now, he still checks up on me.
It takes a lot of guts to start your own political movement. Many people have complaints about the system of government.
She was the biggest female name in Bahamian music. Her songs are still played, sung and loved to this day.
The values we impart to our children are often reflected in the way they live their lives as adults. That is why, when I write Face to Face and tell the stories of people who are walking in their purpose, they often refer to their parents and credit them for their part in making them who they are.
The year was 1973 – the glorious year of Independence for The Bahamas. There was a lot to be proud of. There was such a sense of pride in being Bahamian; having a flag of our own, a national anthem and a pledge. The people of The Bahamas were committed to moving forward, upward and onward together. Bahamians were making their presence felt in the world in many disciplines; among them - athletics.
Imagine running for 26 miles – 42 kilometers. There’s a special place on the endurance list for the people who run this distance in marathons around the world. As I interviewed Anthony Longley for this week’s Face to Face, I was impressed by all of his achievements. He is the first Bahamian to ever serve as International Director in Toastmasters International and he is the first Bahamian to speak at the Million Dollar Round Table.
When you listen to the radio this week, you’ll likely hear a brand new song to dance to. Patrice Murrell’s latest single is yet another fun, upbeat tune. She is known for her bubbly pizazz; but in 2020, Patrice is showing off a more sophisticated, sexy, chic side of herself.
FACE TO FACE: Slam dunk! How Marvin is using basketball to help youngsters find their place in the world
I decided to start off the year with someone who inspired me when we first met face to face. We were in the office of optometrist Dr Charlene Wallace.
It’s the finale! The end of 2019 and the end of an entire decade! Many people are in reflection mode today as the year 2020 is imminent. Tomorrow, it will be a brand new day, a brand new year and a brand new decade.
Christmas time is a time for family and friends to gather and spend quality time together. It’s a special time of the year. No matter whether you celebrate it or not, you will find that those celebrating will probably still buy you presents or ask you to come by the house and enjoy a meal with loved ones.
This time next week it will be Christmas Eve. As quickly as that, the year… and the decade, is coming to an end. As I prepare for the traditional festivities that surround this holiday, it hit me… this will be my first Christmas in many years without Chippie.
FACE TO FACE: Bind us together – How Marsha poured her energy and effort into building a safe place for battered women
Often when one decides that they want to make a difference in the world, they get involved in some kind of club or NGO… maybe a church’s ministry outreach programme.
Why is there violence against women? They are our mothers, sisters… our nurturers and care givers. Why is there violence against girls?
Bahamians know their country consists of a small population. Take a look at any Bahamian and a fellow citizen would either know them, one of their family members, or someone connected to them… for the most part.
Today is a brand new day for Daniella Forbes and her family. Whereas thousands have fled Marsh Harbour, Abaco with no intention of returning, she and her husband believe they are being called by God to return and establish a church there.
This week’s focus is not on an individual, but a group of people and what they taught me about humanity.
The epitome of brotherly love is displayed between Dr Victor Horsley and his two elder brothers, Barton and Neil.
I had the opportunity recently to visit Dr Charlene Wallace’s Palmdale office and see her in action. She was busy advising patients, young and old, conducting eye examinations, and helping them choose the perfect pair of glasses to suit their face. She did it all with a glowing smile and an obvious dedication to her craft. When I learned she was the first Bahamian female Optometrist to return to The Bahamas and be engaged at the Ministry of Health, I understood the level of seemingly boundless energy she has. She is a trailblazer and she has set a good path for others to follow based on determination, commitment and zeal.
IMET William “Doug” Douglass through my father, Allan Ingraham. Daddy was very excited to tell me how Doug was building a recreational court for the kids in a settlement near Doug’s home in South Eleuthera back in 2017. It was a near $200,000 investm
SIR Michael Barnett is living proof that if you can see it, and if you believe it with all your heart, then you can achieve it. Lifetime goals are something to never give up on, despite any obstacles that may come your way. He stands as a testament to the fact that it is indeed possible. Now in his sixties, he is at the peak of his career and is still going strong.
THE Bahamas has come face to face with many catastrophic hurricanes in the past, and has always proven its resilience. But there is no doubt that these powerful storms change the Bahamian landscape and impact the economy. There are lessons to be learned, and a good way to do that is to take look back in time.
FACE TO FACE: Bahamians will continue to make valuable contributions to the US – if given the chance
THERE was a time when tens of thousands of Bahamians migrated to the United States of America. It was 1943, and World War II was still raging. Many Americans were drafted to serve in the armed forces. Others left the farms to work in more profitable war industries.
I had a chat about Hurricane Dorian with 29-year veteran meteorologist Wayne Neely, who has spent most of his professional life writing books with detailed accounts of hurricanes that have affected The Bahamas.
Bahamians all around the globe stared at their mobile phones in despair this weekend and into today as they saw videos and photographs of the destruction Hurricane Dorian wreaked on this country as it dragged across the northern islands.
When you think of advocates for disability in The Bahamas, it’s hard not to think of Mrs. Sheila Culmer. She has been at the forefront of advocacy before I was even born. I recently sat with her and found out why she has dedicated her entire life to helping those with special needs.
When you think of advocates for disability in The Bahamas, it’s hard not to think of Mrs. Sheila Culmer. She has been at the forefront of advocacy before I was even born. I recently sat with her and found out why she has dedicated her entire life to helping those with special needs.
On the very day Davon Alistar “MDeez” Knight was scheduled to light up the stage at Sumfest in Montego Bay, Jamaica, he was laid to rest. The festival was to be widely broadcast throughout the Caribbean with a live stream available for fans around the world.
The cover of the international magazine the Rotarian features Barry Rassin and his wife Esther with a group of flamingoes gathered in front.
The value of life and the value of this weekly column was put into deep perspective for me as I prepared this edition – a dedication to media pioneer Bob Thompson.
Bahamian art and culture means the world to Marsha B. Knowles Adderley. The colours, sounds and vibrancy of Bahamian life are lived through Marsha.
A trend is growing in Nassau. More and more people are becoming interested in alternatives to traditional ways of living.
In the late 1990s, “Matters of the Heart” was such a popular radio programme it became a household name.
When Felicia was just 16-years-old, she gave birth to a beautiful baby girl. She knew she was too young and that life would never be the same. She was born in a two-parent home and she considered her life stable until the age of 10, when her parents got divorced.
Jamielle Davis is a Fox Hill girl to the bone. Her homestead is in Fox Hill, as is her church and the school she spent all of her formative years in.
Nearly 50 Bahamians in a crowd of 10,000 people attending Morgan State University came to a thunderous applause when Atarah Pinder, Jamielle Davis, Michaela Thompson and a few other Bahamian students walked across the stage to receive their awards.
The first time I met Stanya Davis I was at the National Art Gallery attending a women’s empowerment event with some friends. It turned out to be a fulfilling and inspiring experience, hosted by Stanya who was relatable, funny, direct and honest. That became the first of several encounters with a woman who has found a way to interact with and touch the lives of thousands of women in our country. She found the power to do this because her own journey to self was so impactful she felt compelled to help other women heal the way she has.
A Bahamian has been elected to chair the North American and Caribbean region of the World Confederation for Physical Therapy (WCPT). Kitiboni Adderley, a zestful, caring physical therapist with more than 18 years experience was elected by her peers during the WCPT’s 2019 Congress held last month in Geneva. The WCPT, which consists of five regions covering 113 countries, represents more than 450,000 physical therapists worldwide.
Those were the resounding words declared by the surgeon as he pulled out my baby girl on the morning of April 24, 2019. With tears of joy flowing from my eyes, I heard her cry and saw the beautiful body that was growing inside of me all those months… all 8 pounds, 8.5 ounces of her.
I recently met an unsung hero on First St, The Grove – a gem right among the people with a lifetime of giving and serving to share. Those of the generation before me may know his name. But all too often, wonderful people like Sam Williams get lost in the stories of today, when young people could benefit from learning of people like him and find their own way to make a similar or even greater impact.
From Rose’s to Mount Fitzwilliam is one of the best books I have ever read. After completing the nearly 400 pages of rich history and personal reflection, I closed it with the same feeling I had when I arrived at the end of Sir Clifford Darling’s A Bahamian Life Story… a greater sense of responsibility, love of country and impetus to do and be my best.
We often complain about the public education system – its shortfalls and setbacks – but we don’t often praise some of the hardworking educators who go above and beyond to overcome these hurdles to invest into the lives of our children. Their contributions make a difference. Even when some parents don’t seem invested enough, there are teachers who move into action to nurture the potential of their students.
One cannot meet a person like Paul Fernander and forget him.
The poem on the right is one in a series about to be released in a newly-published book Revelations of a Silent Heart by author Kevin Cartwright. I have had a sneak peek at the book and I find the poems so heartfelt, so sincere and very touching. This is his literary debut, which he describes as “a brave compilation of various moods of poetry and prose that speak about life, love, risks and the courage to face head on whatever life throws at him”.
Reverend George Bodie is a prime example of the truth that your circumstances in life do not have to define the outcome of your life. In times like these with violence and crime on the rise and with inner cities constantly threatened by gang activity, Rev Bodie shares his path to a life that is one to be proud of.
Why is it that all librarians are similar in personality? I am not referring to the misconception of a fussy old person who hates noise. I am talking about the trend of librarians being level-headed, helpful, resourceful, friendly people with a quiet spirit and gentle demeanour. Dorcas Bowler is the epitome of that description.
Last week I met a group of smart women who decided to come together to do something special for this country.
Women all around the world celebrated International Women’s Day (IWD) last Friday, a global occasion recognising the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women.
Eric Gibson is a household name. The moment a Bahamian hears it, the title “King” precedes it in their mind. King Eric & His Knights were a popular calypso band in The Bahamas since their inception in 1957, a time when music legend Harry Belafonte released his “Calypso” album which received much international acclaim.
It’s a topic not often discussed in Bahamian relationships, but one that is prevalent and could be wreaking havoc on families – narcissism.
Last week I visited a woman whose age did not dictate her level of poise and persona. Big in personality and kind in heart, Keva Hanna-Lawrence spoke with authority and excellent diction as she shared some of the things she could remember from her days growing up in Acklins with her parents and siblings, including former Governor General Sir Arthur D Hanna.
Many of us know we have greatness within us. We know we are meant to achieve more and do more than we are at present.
Many young women today are into a glitz and glamour lifestyle.
The month of January is a powerful one when it comes to remembering what unifying as a people and working towards a common cause can bring.
It was such a pleasure as well as an eye-opening experience sitting face to face with a centenarian who could converse with me, smile with me and sing with me. She reminded me of the simpler things in life. She helped me to put things in perspective and consider what really matters in old age – family who love you, spend time with you and are willing to take care of you - and a legacy that they can be proud of.
April 30, 2017 will always be one of the most memorable dates in my life.
Having been a journalist for more than two decades now, I have witnessed the spike in murders in this country.
FACE TO FACE: ‘As a mother, when tragedy strikes, you could end up in a place where you forget about your spiritual life; the natural kicks in and you ask God: Why?’
IT was really a shock to hear that Katherine Hilton, the mother of Ashlee Hilton, died just two weeks after her daughter was fatally shot by a gunman on the grounds of Sandiland’s Rehabilitation Centre.
Jarvis and Dereka Grant are a power couple in the world of culture in The Bahamas.
Too often when we see successful people, we automatically think they had it made or the road was well paved for them.
Violence against women and girls (VAWG) is one of the most widespread, persistent and devastating human rights violations in our world today and it remains largely unreported due to the impunity, silence, stigma and shame surrounding it, according to the United Nations.
While World Diabetes Day was being commemorated last week, Minister of Health Dr Duane Sands brought the dismal news that The Bahamas is the world leader in the prevalence of diabetes.
He grew up as a Valley Boy in Culmersville, lost his father as a young boy and began working at an early age to help his mother. His life could have been a story of mediocrity blamed on his circumstances. Instead, he would be the boy who worked to pay for his education, studied hard in school, set goals for himself and achieved them - and then some.
When Edwin A Smith was a little boy growing up in Bain Town in the 1950s, there were great Bahamian athletes making it to the big leagues in baseball or track and field. So, little boys had much to aspire to if they wished to become a professional athlete. But Ed, who spent his afternoons shooting marbles, flying kites, playing stick ball, wrestling, or swimming on Long Wharf beach during the summers, had no idea at the time he would one day make Bahamian history as the first to go pro in an entirely different sport.
My high school friend Valentino Williams has always been the kind of person to do things on a big scale. I always saw great ambition in my schoolmate. He would come up with great ideas and get people to join in. He could be a fierce competitor in schoolwork as well as in basketball, track and field.
When Lucy Lightbourne was in her prime at 30 years old, she had a lot going for her. She had just bought a new car and was serving as the manager of Anne’s Paradise, a popular restaurant and lounge on Thompson Boulevard owned by Elridge Smith.
This summer as Anita Rolle was deciding what she wanted to do for her birthday, it hit her. Why celebrate my birthday alone when there are so many other cancer survivors like me with a new lease on life? Just a few months later, “Anita’s Celebration for a Cause” was born. Anita realised there were countless others in The Bahamas who needed support and encouragement as they are either battling or beat cancer and they all needed each other.
It was difficult for me to accept I had to write this edition of Face to Face posthumously. I had every intention of interviewing Audrey Dean-Wright in person. I had already told her as much. I was excited and, when I started writing this column, I let her know that it would be my honour to tell her life story – one so fulfilled I hadn’t even figured out how I would compact it into a single page. But I knew it was necessary, because so many great Bahamians who have contributed so much don’t have their stories told… they are not celebrated enough.
The Bahamas is a small country filled with incredible people and it never ceases to amaze me when I have the good fortune to meet one of them. In this case, it was a Bahamian woman who is a trailblazer in medicine and continues to work hard to improve the lives of Bahamians suffering from hearing issues.
Amein Burrows has completely turned his life around and believes if he has done it, so can the countless young men in this country who find themselves in a revolving door situation with the cops and the courts. He found the life he was chasing after – quick, fast money, nice cars and girls – came with a price too heavy to bear.
As a child, she would play school with her dolls and teach them things she had learnt. Her navel string is planted in Fox Hill and there, she grew up practicing on family and friends at home, putting them in school for fun, too. Now that she is grown and has her own school located in the heart of Fox Hill, she is taking on a new responsibility; one that requires her to champion the rights of men, women, boys and girls throughout the country.
She grew up at the junction of honesty and integrity road – literally. Her childhood home served as a refuge for many. Her mother taught her how to give unselfishly and to consider the needs of others. She did well in school and carved out a successful career in accounting and finance. Yet today, she has become the focus of a controversy that is playing out nationally without most not really knowing who she is or what she is all about.
Deaconess Esther Elizabeth Neely-Brown left such an indelible mark on the lives she touched that her legacy lives on even though she died in November 2016.
For many years, she was a lead singer in the popular local band “Visage”. She has that signature voice you know the moment you hear it – it’s soul stirring, deep and meaningful. A few years ago, she became a solo artist and continues to make her mark, not only as one of The Bahamas’ beloved entertainers, but as an educator who guides hundreds of Bahamian students in the field of music.
THE Rev Dr James S Sweeting is one of those men who has lived several lives and is still around and ready to do more. Many people touch just one or two professions in their lifetime. Often, it is advised to stick with one career. But Rev Sweeting proves it is possible to be successful in several careers and as a business owner – all in the same lifetime. The key to it, he says, is to give each goal you set everything you’ve got and to know when its time to move on to another level.
A few weeks ago, one of the most renowned Pan-Africanists in the world graced our shores. He is so well known, not only for his booming voice and strong delivery, but also for the hard-hitting messages he brings which aim to empower people with the knowledge he feels would liberate them from mental slavery.
When I sit down face to face with people from all walks of life to interview for this column, the greatest impact usually happens during the interview; some “aha” moment when I understand someone’s purpose or vision, or when I am inspired by their story.
I was scrolling through Instagram one day when I came upon the work of this Bahamian designer. I was in awe. I followed her immediately. Since then, I have had many a jaw dropping and breathtaking experience seeing another one of her creations pop up on my timeline. Even her business name is a cut above – Remilda Rose is a name attached to some of the most beautiful garments to touch red carpets and turn heads in The Bahamas.
I was recently in Eleuthera connecting with my Ingraham side of the family and learning about our heritage in Palmetto Point when I met a talented woman with a friendly disposition and was immediately drawn to her. She became the next focus of Face to Face because after getting to know her a bit better, I found that she had a wealth of knowledge, experience, love of country and a life story worth sharing.
I first met Beat Schlagenhauf when I was covering an event for the Rhythm and Youth Band. This Rake n’ Scrape group comprised young boys and girls and was birthed at the Gerald Cash Primary School under the direction of then music teacher, Nathaniel Adams.
WHEN I was 14 years old, I had the opportunity to participate in the filming of a Hollywood movie right here in Nassau. Gerard Depardieu was the main actor – a French father who took his daughter, played by Katherine Heigl, on vacation to The Bahamas
WHEN looking for solutions to the problems that face this country, we often look to our religious, political and social leaders for the answers. We look for grown-up solutions to problems that are affecting children as well. But what if some of the answers we need could be found in the children?
Why do we hurt the ones we say we love? I believe somewhere in our hearts and minds when we hurt others, it’s because we were not loving ourselves. The love we say we have for others must be felt within the very core of our being. Once safe and secure in our own personal love, then we can have healthy, loving relationships that edify us rather than destroy us.
Metellus Chipman is no stranger to the world of culture and entertainment in The Bahamas.
This past weekend, a noted member of the press and the legal fraternity was laid to rest. She was an attorney with passion as a legal advocate for women and children, a journalist and a communications specialist. More importantly to me, she was like a big sister throughout my childhood years.
Donavon Powell was on a clear path to success in America, making strides in the financial arena after successfully completing college. He had everything going for him and no reason at this point in his career to stop climbing the corporate ladder in the land of opportunity. But instead he chose to follow a calling and try and make a difference in the land of his birth. He came up with an idea that had the potential to make a positive impact in The Bahamas and give him a chance to return home and earn a living.
You could have been abandoned as a young child, left to fend for yourself in one of the toughest ghettos in America with crime statistics stacked against you, and you could still rise above them to become an international professional basketball player, making money playing a game you love. That’s the testimony of Mahershal Simonet, a passionate and driven man who is making a difference on and off the basketball court. He is a skilful point guard and shooting guard who has played in some 15 countries around the world; now he is in The Bahamas discovering his roots and sowing positive seeds into the lives of children here.
Take a slow drive through any Over-the-Hill community and you will find a water pump. It’s a necessity in an area where there are still homes without infrastructure for running water.
“Dynamite Daisy” is a household name in The Bahamas. She is a comedienne well known as the life of the party at weddings, birthdays, church events and functions all over the country. She appears on radio and television shows and commercials, and was the star of many of her own full-stage productions with a group of fellow actors who performed to packed crowds. She has even travelled throughout the United States and the Caribbean with her dynamite act.
I am used to seeing Sharon all dressed up to the nines – hair done, clothing on point and always wearing a big smile. When her cousin contacted me to say Sharon had developed breast cancer and her attitude is so commendable she thought I should visit her for an interview, I obliged. However, I was not prepared for the Sharon I met. Her big, beautiful coif is reduced to the scalp, and although she was never big in size, she is definitely smaller. The only thing that seemed the same to me were her beautiful eyes, her voice and the big, bright smile that usually greets me.
He’s been on this planet for 99 years, has all his faculties and is quite funny, witty and charming. He can hold a conversation with anyone and is so well-read he probably knows quite a bit about the subjects that intrigue most people. It’s amazing - the level of energy that exudes Garth C. Reeves Sr. It seems Father Time and the fountain of youth both blessed him, and he relishes in every moment that he’s alive.
Some people come to The Bahamas and get sand in their shoes and they never seem to shake it out; returning to these islands again and again to be kissed by the Bahamian sun. That’s exactly what happened to Lady Caroline Simmonds.
They say love is blind. When in love, sometimes nothing can stop two people who desire to spend the rest of their lives together. Antoine and Abbie Munroe, who are both blind, have brought truth to this old adage in a positive way. Their testament of love is one so strong that despite the discouragement from many of their family members and friends, they married and now have a beautiful baby girl.
Addis Huyler is a successful, dynamic and confident Bahamian man on a mission to ensure his fellow Bahamians are recognised and honoured for the work they do to help make this country a better one. He is the mastermind behind the Bahamian Icon awards, now in its sixth year, celebrating the dedication and success of Bahamians in areas such as sports, entrepreneurship, commerce, media, entertainment, health, tourism and fine art. He is also the CEO of the SIDDA Communications group, a successful marketing and public relations consultancy. With all this going for him, you would have no idea Addis was once a gawky, tall, lumbering kid who dealt with bullying throughout his school years.
When I was asked to pay a visit to the man they call “the mayor of Fox Hill” as he prepares to be consecrated to the Bishopric, I wasn’t ready for the surprise. No flashy car and lofty mansion here.
She is a Gospel recording artist who shares her gift at churches and events throughout The Bahamas and the world. She was a school administrator for 32 years, helping to nurture the lives of Bahamian children. Yet Lenora Taylor was treated with such disrespect by police, even in her senior years, that she felt obliged to share her story and call on the leaders of the Royal Bahamas Police Force to ensure the officers who deal with the public act with more professionalism.
When a doctor tells you to say your final goodbyes to loved ones, sometimes there’s no coming back. It can be a harrowing moment. The anaesthesiologist asks you to count backwards from ten to one, and the doctor has already told you that you may not survive. But when you have faith, be it as small as a mustard seed, you can overcome anything – and Dr Michelle C Major did just that.
I spent hours on the top of Blue Hills in New Providence at the home of a sprightly and dainty Bahamian grandmother.