Glen Etienne: They died with their boots on, literally
Last week Dominicans mourned the accidental death of national football coach Kirt Hector and footballer Noran Jno Hope who died when their vehicle plunged into a thirty- foot gorge in the Pond Case road last Friday. DFA president Glen Etienne addressed the nation and the football fraternity last week at a press conference.
"It is with a deep sense of loss and sadness that I say a few words in relation to the untimely death of two members of our football family. "The news of their demise came as a shock to me while attending the CFU/CONCACAF Congress in Panama City, Panama last week. The support from the regional and international football community has been encouraging and well- intentioned.
"Let me on behalf of the Board of Management of the Dominica Football Association and the entire football family extends profound and sincere sympathy to the family and friends of our two fallen heroes. May they find comfort in our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, who is the giver and taker of life.
"The last few days have been extremely difficult and painful for all Dominicans, especially their loved ones. Words certainly cannot convey how we truly feel. At this time, let us thank the Almighty Father for Joselyn Prince, who is battling for his life at the Princess Margaret Hospital. It is truly by divine intervention that he is alive today. We trust and pray that his recovery will be a speedy one and that he will be back with us in no time.
"Our fallen heroes, national coach Kirt Hector and debutant, Norran Jno Hope are true heroes in every sense of the word, since they died with their boots on, literally. They died in the process of going to do what they loved.
"Kirt Hector was a very dedicated coach and one who gave his all. He took his job seriously and always strived to make his players better. As a former national player Kirt worked hard when representing his country and his commitment was unquestioned and unchallenged. He demanded the same from his players. This dedicated member of staff has left a void within the football family that will be very difficult to fill.
"Noran Jno Hope was extremely happy to have been selected to the senior national team, having graduated from youth football. His mannerisms and discipline will be forever etched in our memories. His good work ethics is something for others to emulate.
"The next few days will be very trying for all of us. More than ever, let us focus our efforts on positive thoughts as I am sure that is what Kirt and Noran would have wanted. Our efforts must also be focused on Joselyn Prince who is still not out of the woods. Let us more than ever, pray for his speedy recovery and for wisdom for the doctors working with him. Let us also remember, in our prayers, the families and friends of Kurt and Noran as well as their team mates from the Sagicor South East football team during this trying and difficult time.
"The sport of football in Dominica has lost two of its finest and certainly the sport will not be the same. To the members of the national team, let me express profound gratitude to you for your courage and strength during this difficult time. You have demonstrated maturity, good statesmanship and sportsmanship and for that we are all proud of you.
"Special thanks must also be extended to the various individuals and organizations which were on the scene and assisted in one way or the other. Truly this was a great effort and must not go unnoticed.
"This is not a time for the rumor mill to be churning rapidly. Let me call on all those who are bent on mischief to desist from such practice as this does not help the situation and only brings more pain and anguish to the family members of those concerned. In the face of adversity, let us show solidarity not divisiveness.
"The Dominica Football Association pledges its support to the family and friends of all the families affected by this horrible incident and the members of the national team. In the coming days, the Dominica Football Association will make further pronouncements as to how it intends to honour the memories of our beloved coach, Kirt Hector and promising and talented player, Noran Jno Hope.
"These two young lives have been taken away from us like a thief in the night. Indeed, we are truly deprived of their skills and talents. We may never be able to completely get over this loss. We hope that as time passes by, the pain will be more bearably. In this time of profound loss, our only comfort lies in the fact that these two fine gentlemen are in a better place smiling over us and I greeting their maker.
"May their souls Rest In Peace".