Young Michael Bruney
Young Michael Bruney

Mikey Bruney forever stood tall during his life. But it was never a posture of vanity or conceit. He was comfortable in his skin, a Dominica skin, a Caribbean skin. For over four decades we shared many ideas and rich experiences, but above all our mutual passion for Caribbean cultural life, the media and working for the development of the people of the region.

His path through this life was well orchestrated. From his early formation in theatre and public broadcasting to the professional occupation of law, all under expert conscious tutelage, he was destined to serve selflessly. Mikey was fiercely independent in his thinking and way of life, fearless yet empathetic, youthful exuberance to always explore and discover, the helper, the quintessential donor. He never bat an eyelid to share. True friendships like his are everlasting. He was never endeared to praises and platitudes, but he knew the value of his work and his contribution to his country.

I recall that after the destruction of Dominica by hurricane Maria, one of the many Saint Lucian MCMF gang and myself sent over some material contribution to help Mikey in his rehabilitation. He reluctantly received the donations, only to use it to help others he considered more needy than himself.

Mikey could play any part in life, a result of his training in the theatre and communications media and of course in legal practice. He could disarm child, chick, or prosecutor. But beneath these occupational masks was a sincere, friendly, and loving individual, generous to a fault. As one of our mutual friends from Dominica would say 'Mr. Bruney is a good man, when he dere for you, he dere for you, doh mind all de bef talk."

His legacy is the result of his brilliance. His insights and his sharp analytical mind, but more importantly his hard work. Being around him occasionally during all seasons, L experienced that he worked from morning and was able to accomplish a lot even while liming. He ushered me, like many others, into the homes of many Dominicans, of all generations in all the hills and crevices of the island. It should not be surprising that Mikey was at home in any of the Caribbean islands he visited whether for work of play.

As a committed regionalist with friends all over the Caribbean, it should not have surprised anyone that his support for the Caribbean Court of a Justice (CCJ) was just one logical manifestation of his belief and trust in a Caribbean civilization. We discussed many things but always with a Caribbean angle He loved Caribbean life - the people, the food, the culture, and many hours of idle deconstructive discourse sh..t talk we call it.

You did your tour of duty my friend, with pride and dignity. You worked well and played well. Your legacy will absolve you. Thanks for sharing your life with us, particularly, the elite group of four-decade friends from the Caribbean. We are incredibly sad to see you go. But this transition is part of the journey.

Tjenbefo Comrade.