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Ex-Teachers Association, NY, honours stalwart

Ex-Teachers Association, NY, honours stalwart


St.Vincent and the Grenadines Ex-Teachers Association, New York, has paid a special tribute to General Secretary O’Brien Simmons.{{more}}

Simmons was honoured on Sunday, January 16, as the association brought the curtains down on their 28th anniversary celebrations, with their Annual Gala Luncheon at the Grand Prospect Hall, in Brooklyn, New York.

The Bequia native, who hails from Ocar Reform, is known for being an active community organiser.

A former teacher at the Paget Farm Government School, Simmons made his mark in Bequia with his prolific involvement in group activities. He was also known as an ardent footballer.

He is also remembered for his sporting achievement, back in 1972, in a match Guyana United versus Rangers, where he scored seven goals.

Simmons also held the title of Calypso King of Bequia, as well as Scout Master of the Land and Sea Scouts.

After migrating to the USA, Simmons immediately put on his organising hat and soon had the Bequia United Progressive Organization (BUPO) going. He was elected Secretary, a position he held for 13 consecutive years. Simmons has been an Executive member of BUPO since its inception and is its president.

He is involved with Vincentian groups and is known as a very hard worker.

Hence, he wears many hats. Simmons is currently the Chairman of the Caribbean-American Renal Failure Steering Committee; he is also one of the two founding members of COSAGO and has served in many positions in that organisation. Simmons is the current Treasurer.

The Ex-Teachers Association also presented appreciation gifts to persons, who have, over the years, continued to be supporters of the organization.

This year’s Ex-Teachers functions were dedicated to one of its founding members, Vice President Maureen Alexander, who died late 2010.

The Ex- Teachers Association’s President Jackson Farrell, in reflecting on Alexander’s contributions, said: “She was a stalwart, my ADC and fortress. She was my Vice President, as long as I have been President and was a mother figure to me.”

“As an integral part of the organization she contributed without reservation; sometimes she stunned us with her insights, she angered us with her criticism, she often intrigued us with her simplicity. Maureen loved life and lived it to the fullest; she was always on the go,” was the way another fellow member of the association described the late Alexander.

Farrell, speaking of the upcoming year, pledged to be more easily available.

“As we move forward to another anniversary, let us reflect on what we have done, what we haven’t done and strive to make things better. Communication is a two way process”, Farrell said. (RT)