Good deeds can pay off.
On Monday, 16-year-old Signal Hill Secondary School student Anthonio Hackett and 14-year-old Jayvorn Horsford of Bishop’s High School were honoured with the Father of the Nation Medal of Honour Bronze by the Dr Eric Williams Memorial Committee chairman at their respective schools.
The two have been hailed as heroes after finding a purse containing $5,000 on the road through the Pigeon Point Heritage Park on October 29 and returning it to its owner. The owner of the purse, from Cocorite, Trinidad, was vacationing in Tobago when the purse was lost.
Both boys are from Store Bay Local Road in Bon Accord.
Hackett, a fourth-form student, said he and Horsford were riding their bicycles through the park when they discovered the purse.
Speaking with Newsday after the presentation, he said he was happy he did the right thing.
“I feel great, I feel amazing for the good deed I would have done over the carnival.
“Honesty is the best policy, and that is the quote that I live by every day.”
To others in a similar position, he said, “Return it. Don’t matter what you find, just return it, because it would pay off.”
His mother, CindyAnn Waldron, was brought to tears.
“I feel so happy. I am proud of my son. The training that he got, he exceeded, and I am very, very happy of him. We are all very proud of him.”
She said parents must play a major part in bringing up their children.
“As parents, we brought him up teaching him not to touch anything for anybody, don’t take what is not his. It pays off now to see that he is doing exactly what he was taught.”
The school’s vice principal, Xavier King, said honesty is part of the skills taught at the school, as shown by Hackett.
“We teach them a lot of life skills, discipline as well. We teach them to be loving, kind and also about honesty. Therefore, we are indeed happy, because it means that our efforts at teaching did not go in vain. So I really want to congratulate that young man and hope that others would follow. I really congratulate him, and I hope that he continues, and others would follow to do good deeds as his life progresses.”
He had some advice for the other students.
“What was demonstrated was the fact that if you do good, you are rewarded for doing well. And therefore what the other students should take into account is the fact that there are many other opportunities to do well, whether small or large, and they should always look at these opportunities and take these opportunities to do a good deed. It doesn’t necessarily have to be finding money, but it could be helping someone,and that is what we are here for, to teach that kind of life skill as well.”
Congratulating the boys, chairman Reginald Vidale called on the TT Cadet Force to take a hands-on approach at all schools across the island, in an effort to maintain the high principles set at the learning institutions.
Schools Supervisor III at the THA Division of Education, Research and Technology Sherra Carrington-James commended the boys and the parents.
“The division is heartened by the display of strength – strength of character, leadership and genuine empathy for that person who lost that money. We celebrate your positive peer influence, and in no small way I want to recognise the sound parenting.”
Major Cloyd Blackman of the Third Battalion of the TT Cadet Force was also on hand to congratulate the boys: “Well done, young men,” he said.
Previously, the teenagers were also congratulated by the management and staff of Pigeon Point in front of beachgoers. They were also given tokens by the chairman of the board of the Pigeon Point Heritage Park and the Store Bay Beach Facilities, Nyron Leung, and area representative for Bon Accord/Crown Point Joel Sampson.