The Jamaica Cultural Development Commission (JCDC) on Monday (Oct. 19) honoured six residents of Manchester, who have contributed significantly to the development of the parish in their various fields of expertise.
At a Heroes Day ceremony held at Mandeville Park, Baron Watson was recognised for contribution to sports; Joy Samuda for education; Dr. Winston Tolan for medicine; Marcia Claire-Clarke for agriculture; Merril Minnifee-Greaves for postal and community service; and Sergeant Florizel Mahoney Williams for security.
Guest speaker at the function and Minister at the Greendale United Church in St. Catherine, Rev. Astor Carlyle, told the packed audience that the honourees were being saluted for their work in improving the lives of others.
He said that even as the country recognised those, who have made sterling contribution, “we must remember the many heroes that stand behind, in the shadows of God’s purview, giving of themselves tirelessly to the development of others.”
A section of the large audience at the Heroes Day function held at Mandeville Park, Manchester, where the Jamaica Cultural Development Commission (JCDC) honoured six residents for their contribution to the parish.
“The single mother, who works long hours to feed her children and give them an education; that father who… willingly gives up his personal dreams so that the aspirations of his children can be realised; the market vendor, who would choose to operate with honest scales forgoing the easy temptation of making a quick dollar by unfair operations. These are guardians of our heritage. They may never stand on a stage to receive the accolades and applause of men, but God, who looks at their service of selflessness, nods in holy approval,” he stated.
Mrs. Samuda, who responded on behalf of the awardees, said they were humbled to be so recognised on Heroes Day.
“It is humbling for all of us. We did our work with enjoyment. It is not so much the gifts, but it is the recognition by people coming out to stand with you, and share with you for your contribution,” she stated.
Mrs. Samuda, a former Principal for the New Forest Primary and Junior High, who served the education system for more than 40 years, said Heritage Day was a time to instil renewed hope in Jamaicans.
“We have a lot more to do for our children, and to ensure that all is done to make the future good for them,” she added.