RYAN MAGUIRE, 17, who drowned after saving two teenage girls at Tyrico Bay was remembered as youth who was always there for people, at his funeral on Saturday at Oropune Gardens, Piarco. On a playing-field under blue skies and golden sunshine, he was mourned by family members, neighbours, colleagues from Oropune Police Youth Club and schoolmates from El Dorado East Secondary School.
His aunt Stephanie Maguire gave the eulogy.
“He touched many lives. He dreamed of becoming a soldier but now he is not here to see that. We are going to miss him dearly.”
She read a tribute by Ryan’s sister, Ronel, too distraught to talk. “When he came to visit me at my workplace, he always had a bright smile. He was loved by everyone. Brothers and sisters will always have their bickering but love each other. The death will pain us forever.”
Allysha Smith read the scripture (John 15:13), “Greater love has no one than to lay down one's life for one's friends.” Johann George, 11, and Ada Byam, five, softly played Amazing Grace on pan, while Hamlyn Paul paid tribute in dance.
Cpl Kevin Greenidge of the youth club said, however, hard one might have wanted to be mad at Ryan, whenever he smiled you couldn’t stay vexed.
“When I got the sad news, calling his mother and telling her was the hardest thing I’ve done in all my years as a police officer.”
Greenidge said Ryan was still one of the group’s success stories.
“The story is not over. The very ground on which we stand will be named after him. His name will live on, although he is not here.”
Music teacher, Timothy Noel, recalled a Tobago trip where he had won overall to sing in a talent show by first winning over Ryan. Saying Ryan had chosen a Buju Banton hit, he said, “This is the last song I ever sang with Ryan.” He sang it, Untold Stories.
Neighbour and friend Dimitri Boodoo said while Ryan could be loud and wild, he was also selfless and would fight for his friends, and never held a grudge.
“Throughout his life, Ryan tried to make everyone happy. It’s now up to us to continue living for him.”
Ex-national footballer Clayton Ince hailed Ryan as a hero who had done more for TT than he had.
Ryan’s friend, Justin, fondly recalled his encouragement in football.
“He’d say ‘You could make it boy. Don’t doubt yourself,’ Justin said. “This is a wake up call for me. I’ll take football and school seriously. I’ll do it for Ryan.”
A neighbourhood youth related, “Ryan would never pass you straight. You could be sad or depressed and Ryan was the one who would build you up. If something was happening, he’d be running into it, like a soldier.”
A teacher told Newsday how sad it was to lose Ryan who, despite challenges, had a lot of life in him and potential.
“He gave his life in the service of others.”
He reckoned Ryan could get a national award for gallantry. Ryan was then buried at Tunapuna Cemetery.