A Service of Appreciation for veteran Educator, Wesley Augustus Hewling, was held at the St. James Parish Church in Montego Bay St. James, on September 28.
Members of the teaching fraternity, led by Professor Errol Miller and other past Presidents of the Jamaica Teachers’ Association (JTA), paid glowing tributes to Mr. Hewling, for more than 45 years of dedicated service to the teaching profession.
The building housing the Western Regional Office of the JTA and the JTA’s Co-operative Credit Union, has also been named the ‘Wesley Hewling Building’, in his honour.
Past President of the JTA, Woodburn Miller, in his tribute, said that Mr. Hewling laboured in the community, served in the church and made a phenomenal contribution to the educational system.
“The JTA wishes to record its appreciation to Wesley Hewling who, for many years was ‘Mr. Education and Mr. JTA’, in the West. The schools he headed as Principal were models of well run institutions. At the same time, he was a teacher, leader and champion par excellence. He served as President of many district associations in St. James and Hanover, as President of the St. James Parish Association, as Board Chairman of Mt. Alvernia High School and Sam Sharpe Teachers’ College. On the national and international levels, he was President of the JTA, Regional Officer and Trustee of the association for many years and Secretary of the Caribbean Union of Teachers,” Mr. Miller noted.
He said that in an age when voluntary service is waning, the history of stalwarts like Mr. Hewling, needed to be recorded and taught, as a catalyst for the country’s development.
Students of Coronaldi Avenue Primary School in Montego Bay participating in a Service of Appreciation for retired educator and past President of the Jamaica Teachers’ Association, Wesley Hewling, at the St. James Parish Church in Montego Bay on September 28. Mr. Hewling taught at the school for many years.
In giving the main address, Professor Miller said that Mr. Hewling, although born in humble circumstances, had risen to be a prince among his people.
“Royalty in our circumstances comes out of character and service to one’s God and fellowman, as demonstrated in the life of Wesley Hewling. He grew up in challenging times, but soon shared in the vision of a better Jamaica for all. He was a man of character and great principles and was known and respected as an exemplary and legendary teacher,” Professor Miller pointed out.
“As we all gather to pay tribute to a true son of the soil, who was committed to the professional development of the teacher, we urge all those who would seek to emulate him, to be influenced by his phenomenal contributions and achievement,” he said.
Mr. Hewling, who is visually and physically challenged, was unable to be in attendance at the service of appreciation. His son, Dr. Delroy Hewling, replied on his behalf.
Dr. Hewling noted that the entire family, including his father, was “immensely appreciative of the many accolades and commendations extended to one who so loved the teaching profession.”
“We, as members of the family, are truly proud to be in attendance and to hear all these great expressions of love and warm tributes to our dear father,” he said.
For his long and faithful service to education and Jamaica, Mr. Hewling has received several awards, including the Order of Distinction, Prime Minister’s Medal, Roll of Honour (JTA), Musgrave Medal (Bronze) and the R.C. Tavares Award.