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Red cap porter killed by bike while at wake for his mom

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Red cap porter killed by bike while at wake for his mom

BY HORACE HINES
Observer staff reporter
hinesh@jamaicaobserver.com

Saturday, April 27, 2019

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MONTEGO BAY, St James – Members of the Montego Bay Red Cap Porters Association are mourning the passing of one of their members who was mowed down by a motorcycle on the road across from his house where a wake for his mother was taking place Thursday night.

The deceased has been identified as 55-year-old Romeal Wilson of Bounty Hall, Trelawny.

Up to late yesterday afternoon the driver of the motorcycle was in hospital in an unconscious state.

According to president of the Montego Bay Red Cap Porters Association, Hopeton Burnett, members of the association were out in their numbers at the wake for Wilson’s mother, who is scheduled to be buried today, when tragedy struck.

Burnett said that Wilson, who was busy trying to make his colleagues and community members comfortable, went across the street from his to fetch an item when, on his way back across the street, he was hit down by a motorcycle.

“It is so tragic, especially the fact that we were just talking together and he just left to pick up something. He went across the road and I only heard a thud and when I look I saw the person lying in the road, but I thought it was the bikeman; me never know it was Romeal. Right now me shake up,” Burnett said.

“My pressure went up from regular to 153 over 91. So I could have died as well,” Burnett told the Jamaica Observer.

“It was our night [as] whenever any family member of a red cap dies we sponsor the wake for one night.”

A distraught Cedric Graham, another red cap porter, was yesterday still trying hard to come to terms with Wilson’s sudden passing.

“Most of us were there supporting him in his time of bereavement and he was moving to and fro to get things for us when tragedy struck,” Graham told the Observer.

“All of us feel it. He was a good, good man. We all went to support him because most porters were there and everybody kept moving, trying to make everyone comfortable when the tragedy struck. He was a jovial persons,” said Graham.

Burnett, too, said he was a jovial person, adding that it is a big loss. “He was the type of person who always try to make you laugh. He was just a nice person. It is sad for the Montego Bay Red Cap Porter Association,” said Burnett.

He revealed that just last two months ago, another of their colleague, Alwyn Bennett, died as a result of injuries he sustained during an accident involving a motorcycle in Dumphries in St James.

Wilson’s death brings to 11, the number of road fatalities reported in the parish of Trelawny since the start of the year. Motorcycle accidents accounted for five of that number.

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