GYRO vendor Elias Dabbourah who died from a gunshot wound to his head, was laid to rest yesterday following a funeral service at the St Joseph’s Roman Catholic Church in Bacolet, Scarborough.
Dabbourah, originally from Kafra in Syria succumbed to his injuries around 11.39 am last Saturday at the Scarborough General Hospital, five days after he was shot in the head by a gunman while offloading items from a van outside his Crown Point business place.
From at early as 9 am, mourners began arriving for the 10 am service, flocking to the sides of the casket for a last-minute viewing of the body. Dabbourah’s wife, Sally Hourani, opened the casket for a brief moment, wept, spoke in her native language and then closed the casket.
Officiating priest Fr Emmanuel Pierre said many are still in pain by Dabbourah’s death. “There are occasions in life and death which make us cry out why…tragic death, violent death is one such occasion. Overcome with the grief which we feel on death, when it happens there is the extra and anguish question, ‘why did it happen in this way’. There are no simple answers to that question at a moment like this,” he said.
Fr Pierre offered sought to comfort grieving relatives and friends. “There is almost nothing we can say that’s helpful. We have the words we need, and the words we have, have drawn our faith and the words are ‘he’s with God’. Those are the words; brother Elias is with God and we can say this because as Christian people we believe in the resurrection.
“We believe that brother Elias in now in the gentle hands of our God… we know he’s in gentle hands, we also know that he’s still alive but now in another place and we’ll all meet him some day again,” Fr Pierre said.
ASP David Powder, ASP for Tobago West told Newsday that two men are assisting police in connection with the murder. He said the investigation is ongoing and currently at a sensitive stage. Dabbourah’s brother Thair Hourani, reading the eulogy, described him as a fun-loving and cheerful individual.
Former Arima mayor Ghassan Youseph called for a collective effort from the public to help the police combat crime. THA Minority Leader Watson Duke called on Commissioner of Police Gary Griffith to do more to protect immigrants. “I call on Griffith to do more for immigrants, people must feel safe. The news on crime has only been entertaining these what we want to see is how crime is being abated.” He said all of Tobago is mourning Dabbourah’s passing as he was a productive, honest and hard-working member of society.