The small community of Mongo Road in the northern village of Gouyave, St. John was plunged into a state of mourning last week Wednesday following the tragic death of one of its members.
The body of 24-year-old Ian Modeste was found in the river within close proximity to the recently refurbished Hubble Bridge.
The police are continuing investigations into the death of the youngster who was known to be one of the individuals who received minor injuries when the old Hubble Bridge dramatically collapsed back in September 2015.
“Ian, Ian, Ian, you go and leave me,” was the repetitive heart-breaking cry of one family member, when THE NEW TODAY arrived on the scene.
The body was fished out of the river by the undertakers of the Otway Bailey Funeral Home.
A host of family members and persons within the community of Gouyave Estate, who converged on the scene, indicated that the young Modeste suffered from epilepsy and suspected that he may have had an attack while in the river, slipped and helplessly fell to his death.
“He normally comes to the river every morning to take a bath and I think probably he fell and knocked his head while having a seizure,” said a female cousin of Modeste, who described him as a very helpful, humble and friendly, high-spirited individual.
“He normally helps a lot of the vendors during the ‘Fish Friday’ event…he will be missed,” she added.
The grieving grandmother of the deceased, Irva Modeste, who struggled to maintain her composure after hearing about the death, confirmed that he visits the river daily.
However, she said that on the morning in question, he went earlier than usual to the river.
“Every morning he goes to the health centre for his medication (but this morning) the nurse asked me how (come) she didn’t see him as yet (and) I said well I don’t know where he is.
“He usually goes up to the river (to) wash…I find this morning he went up earlier than usual …I didn’t even go up there (where the body was found) because if I go up there is worse for me I might have died with him too … I said, Oh God boy, just so he leave me and go.
A female passerby told reporters that she was the one responsible for alerting the police of the body seen in the river and expressed grave disappointment that other persons who witnessed the body refused to call the lawmen.
“When I reached on the bridge there were about four of them (neighbours) there…they said from the time he went in they haven’t seen him come out…”, she said.
“The four of them refused to call the police, they said they ain’t taking no part…I find that is stupidness. They were around, they know how the fella sick….call the police,” the woman declared furiously.