Tragedy in Speyside: Hardworking mother falls to her death

FREAK DEATH: Mother of one Umilta Fleck allegedly fell to her death on Sunday in Speyside.  -
FREAK DEATH: Mother of one Umilta Fleck allegedly fell to her death on Sunday in Speyside. -

Hardworking mother of one Umilita Fleck may have paid with her life for being such an industrious person.

Fleck allegedly fell to her death off a ladder on Sunday while working in Lucy Vale, Speyside.

The 49-year-old labourer had previously told her family she was not feeling well.

Police say Fleck, also known as Elizabeth Fletcher, of Studley Park got a job to remove foliage from a 20-feet embankment at the back of a house. But around 10.30 am, an occupant of the house found the mother of one lying on the ground unresponsive.

The Fire Service and the police were immediately called. Assistant Fire Chief Officer David Thomas responded and checked her vitals, but there was none.

DMO Steve Ogbu pronounced her dead and ordered her body removed to the mortuary at the Scarborough General Hospital.

Acting Sgt Joseph of the Charlotteville Police Station is continuing inquiries.

Fleck’s sister Pat Fletcher told Newsday on Monday, “We’re all just trying to cope.”

Fletcher said Fleck's ten-year-old daughter was "not doing well at all."

She said initially the family was told that Fleck fell, then an uncle who is a firefighter later informed them about her death.

She said the tears immediately began to flow.

She described her sister as a loving person who enjoyed working outdoors.

“You see gardening, she loved that. She used to do anything – what man does do, she would do.

"My sister was real nice, she’ll go out of her way for you. She was a very good mother. She used to cut people yard, most of the people in Speyside yard she used to cut. Most of her friends were the elderly within the community.”

Fletcher, a safety officer, said when she visited the scene on Sunday, the ladder was in the same position.

"Her body was behind a short wall, and the short wall has steel projecting out and is not like that bore her or anything. Behind the wall, there is some aloes, she was lying face down in the aloes.”

She added: “This tells me, she wasn’t feeling well, which I know for sure because she would have told me prior – and her daughter told me the night, she still wasn’t feeling well. When she went there to work, she even told the people, and they gave her something to eat. I think, you know you does get a blackout, and she just fall down right there.”

IN GRIEF: Ain Fletcher, right, father of Umilita Fleck, his wife Merle Fletcher, left, and daughter Pat Fletcher at their home in Goodwood on Monday. Fleck died on Sunday after allegedly falling off a ladder in Speyside. - David Reid

She said her sister was spending some time with her in Goodwood and only left on Saturday.

She said her sister was on a herbal medication for a thyroid problem.

“Our last conversation was good. She was with me for about four to five days before she went to Speyside.

"She wasn’t feeling good as she was taking the tablet, so I tell her stop taking the tablet. She said she had stopped the day before. She said it was making her skin itch her and bringing out rash on her skin. I told her she needed to take a cleanout as it was in her system. Then we played cards together and we also had some conversation about she wanting to build a house.”

Electoral representative for Parlatuvier/ L’Anse Fourmi/ Speyside Farley Augustine said he was very fond of the deceased.

“Liz was one of the hardest workers I knew. She was never limited by traditional roles set out for women – in fact, she worked harder than most men I know. She would cutlass the thickest brush, she will use a brushcutter effortlessly, she navigated and cleared any terrain and make something aesthetically beautiful out of it. She was also a very dedicated mother – almost always had her daughter with her. She worked long and hard and she worked honestly."

He added: “We are all deeply saddened by her lost. I wish to extend condolences to her family. As a community we will do all we can to care for her daughter.”

An autopsy is yet to be scheduled.


"Tragedy in Speyside: Hardworking mother falls to her death"

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