Sadness and anger mix at Tiffany Reid’s memorial

POSTED: 09/17/11 3:25 PM

St. Maarten – A small but empathetic group of people held a candle light march for Tiffany Reid on Thursday evening. The teen died on September 2, 2011 and her father R.R. remains in custody as the prime suspect in her murder.

Thursday’s march was organized by the St Maarten Academy PSVE and C.A.R.E., which is headed by Nkosazana Illis. People assembled at the Rupert I. Maynard Youth Community Centre for the wake were then bussed to theSt.DominicHigh Schoolto take the walk upPumpkin Roadwhere Tiffany’s body was found.

Once assembled Illis, who taught Reed, said the teen was “a very helpful person who wanted to care for less fortunate people inAfrica.” Her classmates have now taken up her cause and plan to see it through.

“Today is just the beginning and I am so happy to see so many young faces here tonight. This means that young people are becoming very conscious of what is happening here on the island and they too have a voice. No to violence, no to abuse, no to crime, our voices must be heard,” Illis said.

Minister of Education, Culture, Youth and Sport Rhoda Arrindell addressed the gathering as a mother and while she sympathises she’s clear that she “can’t imagine what Tiffany’s mother is going through” because of the unfortunate fact that her young daughter is dead.

“I think it is symbolic that she was put down under this tree. Those of us who experience violent relationships within their homes or on their jobs should let this teach us that when ever we feel hurt, we must remember Tiffany. I encourage anyone who is experiencing a violent relationship to speak out to somebody and I urge the community to extend a helping hand whenever you are called upon to assist,” Arrindell said.

Emotional time

Thursday’s memorial was an emotional time for Reid’s mother Evelyn Jervis, who broke down just after arriving at the place where her daughter’s body was found. There were also some angry people at the march.

One woman said, “I feel that the man is a killer, I think that is because he could not get his wife back that he took it out on his daughter.”

“I think that he should be the first person in St Maarten that should get the death penalty. You can’t just kill off your own child just like that. If the lady left he, at least he still had his child. But if this happened inJamaica, they would have killed him long time. He don’t deserve to stay in no prison.

There was also a sense of disappointment that more people did not attend the march.

“That was a child and it could have been anyone’s. A ceremony of this nature should have been attended by more people and I think that every school on the island should have been involved,” one woman said.

“This is a very important moment and more people should have been here to show their support to such a sinful act. It is impossible that a father could kill his daughter just like that and the mother needs the support. United we stand, divided we fall,” another woman added.

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