Remembering Rock Gutter Tragedy Six Years On

Today January 12, 2021, will mark six years since the tragic Rock Gutter accident. Rock Gutter is located almost half-way between the rural villages of Fancy and Owia on the northeast of St. Vincent.

A mini-bus carrying twenty-one persons, eighteen of whom were students on their way to secondary schools at Georgetown, North Union, and Kingstown, careened off the road and went over a precipice into the raging sea.

The other persons aboard the mini-bus were the driver, the lessee of the mini-bus who doubled up as conductor, and nurse. Everyone on the vehicle boarded it at Fancy.

Solemnly we recall first the names of the students who are dead and those who are missing. Their names must be forever etched in our collective memory as a fitting memorial which no grave nor time can ever extinguish. Our young ones who are dead are:

Jamalie Edwards and his brother Jamall of the North Union Secondary School;

Racquel Ashton of the Georgetown Secondary School;

Glenroy Michael of the St. Vincent Grammar School;

Anique Alexander of the North Union Secondary School.

Our beloved who are missing are:

Chanstacia Stay of the North Union Secondary School; and

Simonique Ballantyne of the Georgetown Secondary School.

As a grateful nation, we rejoice that fourteen of our fellow-citizens survived this horrible tragedy; eleven of them are students and three are adults. By name the surviving students are:

Onique Michael;

Christie Bowens;

Odesia Stay;

Teyahna Bowens;

Terril Thomas;

Israel Roberts;

Ruthann Bowens;

Orlando Lewis;

Shemroy Yorke, all of the North Union Secondary School; and

Candi-Ann Sterling of the Georgetown Secondary School.

The three adults who survived are:

Ehud Myers, the conductor;

Ravannan Nanton, the driver; and

Sherlon Hoyte, a nurse.

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