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‘Das’ DaSilva passes on

‘Das’ DaSilva passes on

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Retired businessman Dennis DaSilva has died at the age of 84 years.

DaSilva, who was also known as “Das” died quiety at his home on the evening of Sunday, March 25, a relative told SEARCHLIGHT.{{more}}

When the House of Assembly sat yesterday, tributes were paid to DaSilva by members of both sides of the House.

He was described as a successful, hardworking businessman, who was known for his generosity.

Prime Minister Dr Ralph Gonsalves, said when he was a sixth former, he lived with “Das” between 1964 and 1965, free of cost, at his residence at Lower Middle Street.

He described DaSilva, who is his relative, as “generous beyond belief.

“He looked after so many persons in this country”, particularly people from the North Central Windward area, where DaSilva originated, Gonsalves disclosed.

Gonsalves said DaSilva was one of the persons who encouraged him and then leader of the St Vincent Labour Party Vincent Beache to “put aside their rivalries” in the North Central Windward constituency and come together.

Gonsalves said it was only last Thursday that DaSilva’s son Kenneth informed him that his father was “looking weak” and suggested he visit him. He said he had planned to do so this week.

He was an “extremely successful businessman”, “hard working”, and an “ace man at draughts”, Gonsalves said.

“He was a good man, a man who has made an immense contribution. This country is much better for Das DaSilva having lived among us,” the Prime Minister said.

Leader of the Opposition Arnhim Eustace described DaSilva as a “very successful businessman” who “made a very significant contribution to the development of our country, and without much recognition, given his contribution.

“He had an approach which belied his determination, (he) seemed cool and collected at all times. Behind that was a drive and a determination to make good for himself, his family and his nation,” Eustace said.

Over the years, DaSilva established a successful business as the agent for Johnney Walker whiskey, Old Oak Rum and Angostura Bitters, among other products. Later in life, together with his sons Kenneth and Rohalio, he established a water bottling company, Mountain Top Springs Ltd., the Congo Valley Resort and Development Company and a Coconut Water Bottling Plant.

He was also well known for the river cooks he hosted on weekends at his property in the mountains at Congo Valley.

Tributes were also paid by Senator Julian Francis and opposition Members of Parliament St Claire Leacock and Daniel Cummings.

DaSilva is expected to be laid to rest later this week at the Colonarie Roman Catholic Church.

He is survived by his widow Carmen, children, grandchildren, other relatives and friends.

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