It is likely that private funerals will be held to say farewell to two of Trinidad and Tobago’s leading singers, Kenny J and Bomber, who died on the first and second days of the new year.
Clifton “Bomber” Ryan, 93, who lived long enough to welcome 2022, died from natural causes.
Kenwrick "Kenny J" Joseph, 69, died the next day. Although fully vaccinated, Kenny J lost his battle to covid19 two weeks after he contracted the virus.
He was one of the advocates for the vaccine because of the effect it was having on his livelinood as an entertainer. He agreed to do an advertisement for the Ministry of Health, encouraging the vaccine-hesitant to take the jab. He shared his thoughts about the vaccine and virus in a video of what is said to be his last interview on D Live on December 8, which has gone viral.
In it Kenny J spoke about his decision to get vaccinated, as all promoters wanted to see his vaccination card and identification card before hiring him.
The calypsonian, who became popular for his soca parang around Christmas time, said he also wanted to protect himself and his fans.
One of the eerie perspectives he shared, jokingly at the time, was that he was preparing his will.
“I am working on my will right now, because you never know how long you will live, whether you take the vaccine or not." Funeral arrangements are still being organised for the two entertainers, whose deaths have plunged the fraternity into mourning.
Executive member of the Trinbago Unified Calypso Organisation (TUCO) Shirlane Hendrickson said the organisation had no details of any final rites for the two.
“The families have not said anything. We are just asking the people to hold some strain and give the family some time to organise their business.”
Kenny J’s daughter Jeselle Joseph told the Newsday said while she is still working out arrangements, it is unlikely she will share the details because of the covid19 health regulations, which limit the number of mourners at funerals.
“We don’t want to breach the covid 19 protocols and have a lot of people gathered for his final rites.”
But she said the funeral will be livestreamed and details will be posted on social media.
The body is being kept at Belgrove’s Funeral Home, San Fernando, where a private ceremony will take place within the next week. She preferred not to say whether Kenny J would be cremated or buried.