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Participants pay respects to Police Band member at summer camp ceremony

Participants pay respects to Police Band member at summer camp ceremony

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A ceremony on Wednesday, where 87 students received certificates after a five-week St Vincent and the Grenadines Police Force Band course was tinged with sadness.{{more}}

The students and police officers stood in silence for one minute, in respect for the death of PC628 Franklyn Matthews.

The 37-year-old Matthews died earlier that day in the United States, where he had sought medical attention.

He was a member of the Police Force for 17 years and was instrumental in the success of the camp, which was initiated in 2008.

Band Leader Sergeant Bernard Haynes, in giving an overview of the camp, did so with mixed emotions.

He, however, said that this year’s camp was as successful as those held over the past five years.

Haynes explained that during the summer programme, the students were taught the fundamentals of music.

They were also taught how to hold a musical instrument, produce musical notes and play the instrument.

“Those participants who attended in previous years excelled rapidly and it was amazing how the first-timers caught on quickly.

“Many persons have difficulties learning and mastering the art of music. However, these children are amazing,” he said.

The children also learnt about the judicial system from Collin John, crown council in the office of the Director of Public Prosecutions.

Two officers from the Drug Abuse Resistance Education programme also facilitated sessions, where they educated the kids on the harmful effects of drugs and violence.

Commissioner of Police Keith Miller congratulated the participants on taking time out from their summer vacation to be a part of the camp.

Miller also expressed condolences to the family of Matthews.

Matthews played the saxophone and keyboard. (AA)

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