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There is a saying that when a poor man dies there are no comets seen, but the heavens blaze the death of princes.

This saying became evident these past few weeks as we mourn the passing of two great personalities, N.A.N. Ducreay – a former Minister of Government- and the former Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) Gene Pestaina. Weeks later we heard from the Public Relations Officer of the Police Force of the passing of a Roseau great man, Eustace Buffong, who was found dead on a stall at the Roseau Market; nothing more was heard of him.

The late Eustace Buffong was born on Queen Mary Street (Lagoon); he was the last son of the late Mr. & Mrs. Buffong; both died when he was a young boy. As a result he was left to paddle his own canoe, as the saying goes. And he had no other choice but to take to the streets to earn a living, until he was seriously affected with a bad foot for the greater part of his life. He strongly objected to have an amputation and remained a beggar to the end of his life.

Those of us who knew him well will remember his love for his radio, although his radio sets were stolen from him on regular occasions; but he was never happy without one. He had a great love for cricket, be it local, regional or international. His saddest moment in life was the decline in the standard of West Indies cricket. Whenever we met during a match, he usually greeted me with the words 'West Indies letting us down boy'.

He was a beggar who chose from whom to beg. A proud beggar he was.

May his soul rest in peace.

Buffong's friend


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