THE Trinidad and Tobago flagman standing at the back of the Church of Assumption in Maraval signified Anthony Harford’s dedication to country and his unwavering dedication to sport and media.
The flagman’s involvement did not end there, as during the funeral he walked down the aisle before returning to the back of the church.
Harford, who died on December 3, was remembered at his funeral on Monday for his love for Trinidad and Tobago.
“Harfie” held multiple positions in the media and was a sports enthusiast, with football, cricket and horse racing especially benefiting from his commitment to seeing others prosper.
The sporting and media community turned up in their numbers, including former national footballers. Former Strike Squad captain Clayton Morris, former national goalkeeper Clayton Ince and the most-capped TT player Angus Eve, who is now the coach of the national senior men’s team, all attended. Football administrators Sam Phillip, Richard Piper and Shaun Fuentes also paid their respects.
Media veterans Tony Fraser, Andy Johnson, Roger Sant, Don Lee and Ashford Jackman were also present.
Harford’s friend for decades Bruce Aanensen, who founded All Sport Promotions with him in the 1980s, was also there.
In the eulogy, Harford’s niece Danielle Harford described her uncle as a “lover of life, lover of humanity, lover of all things sport, lover of country.”
She said, “Uncle Tony had a special relationship with life.”
Harford was one of the more popular voices on radio and TV throughout his life.
Danielle said Harford began practising his craft during childhood, as he was the neighbourhood commentator while playing sports with his friends.
Harford had a leading role in helping to propel local sports. He was also a sports broadcast anchor who worked at TTT and also ran the now-defunct WMJX 100.5FM.
He marketed and managed the Shell Caribbean Cup, a football competition involving countries throughout the region.
He was a former manager of the TT Carifta team, president of the Northern Football Association and a presidential candidate for the TT Cricket Board in 1999.
When the Soca Warriors qualified for the 2006 FIFA World Cup, Harford was instrumental in arranging for fans to travel to Germany at an affordable rate.
Wayne Anthony Le Blanc and Jones P Madeira gave tributes at the funeral. Le Blanc, a long-time friend, highlighted Harford’s achievements over the years. Patrick Jaggessar read Madeira’s tribute, as the latter could not attend.
Madeira, who worked in the media for decades, first met Harford in the 1970s at NBS Radio 610. He remembered Harford back then as a “young man with one of the most pleasant voices you could ever hear on the radio.”
A former editor-in-chief of Newsday, Madeira, recalled Harford’s professionalism.
“He was the most reliable, always on time for his tasks, very respectful to all levels of staff, never scoffing at any suggestion no matter the source and interpreting them right always.”
Madeira also reflected on Harford’s personality.
“His outrageous sense of humour, boosted by his ability to tell a story, could make one’s day or weeks. He always made himself central to the joke.
“I will truly miss him. I commend his style, his professionalism, and his willingness to try to be better always to the young aspiring broadcast professionals as being more than worthy of emulation.”