Emily Pasqual, sister of Trinidadian Melan June Salvary-Doyle who drowned with her grandson while trying to seek shelter during the passage of category five Hurricane Irma over a week ago, said they are still awaiting word from Foreign Affairs Minister Dennis Moses as to when the body would be brought home for burial.
Salvary-Doyle’s grandson Oliver Gedio, three, drowned with her while they were seeking shelter as the Hurricane lashed St Martin. Their bodies were swept away in the flood waters. Salvary-Doyle went to St Martin to spend time with her daughter Daphne Doyle and whose granddaughter was pregnant at the time.
Daphne Doyle lived on the island for the past 20 years. Her husband died in a motorcycle accident when she was five months pregnant. Daphne is a mother of eight. Oliver was her last child. When contacted yesterday, Antigua and Barbuda Foreign Affairs Minister Charles Fernandez said they were still working on getting Salvary-Doyle’s body back to TT to bring closure to her family.
“We have spoken about it but, we have not been able to formalise the actual plan yet because to move a body is not an easy thing and there is a communication gap in terms of Antigua and St Martin. We have started to reach out for it and we have promised the Government when we can work up logistics we will let them know,” Fernandez said.
There was no surety of Oliver’s body being brought to TT since he was was not a citizen as he was born in St Martin. He said transport of a body from another country was not easy, but they were working on it to bring closure for the family. Pasqual said her niece was “still in a daze” as she tried to come to terms with the loss of her mother and and baby boy.
“Their bodies went to Guadeloupe yesterday (Thursday) for autopsies to be done. It was the first day that I really accepted that my sister and her grandson were gone. Pasqual said the family has been doing its best to send Salvary-Doyle to her resting place in peace and have kept several wakes in her and her grandson’s memory.
“One of our niece is doing a service of a celebration of life on Friday in San Fernando, Pointe-a-Pierre Road, Vistabella. I can’t believe Irma could have hurt us so much, but we have to give them a blessed send off,” Pasqual said.