Har­vey’s spirit lives on

Jamaica Gleaner - - FOOTPRINTS -

On Septem­ber 2, two days af­ter Cyn­thia Vi­ola Har­vey cel­e­brated her 78th birth­day, she made the tran­si­tion to an­other realm.

She was born on Au­gust 31, 1938, in the Shrew­bury dis­trict of Log­wood, West­more­land.

The daugh­ter of Gwen­dolyn Brown and Wil­liam Oc­tavius Har­vey, she at­tended Coke’s View Ele­men­tary School. She did not tarry long at home af­ter her ele­men­tary school­days were over. With her un­cle’s suit­case, then called the ‘grip’, she jour­neyed to Sa­vanna-la-Mar to seek em­ploy­ment.

Har­vey found a job at a guest house at 99 Dalling Street, but soon af­ter, the young girl was to be­come a mother her­self, giv­ing birth to a boy named Rowan (who pre­de­ceased her even­tu­ally). As life went on, Har­vey had six more chil­dren: Clive, aka Robert; Elaine, aka Jen­nifer; Patrick; Cherry; Wayne, aka Paul; and Neville, aka Peter) into this world.

At her thanks­giv­ing ser­vice on Satur­day, Septem­ber 17, held in the St George’s Angli­can Church in Sa­vanna-la-Mar, her son Wayne, said, “Life was never a bed of roses for Cyn­thia. She strug­gled and suf­fered un­der the hands of her em­ploy­ers, work­ing like a mule just to make a bet­ter life for her­self and her child ... . She cared for her chil­dren with the lit­tle she had, and al­ways en­sured that she would never hear them say they were ever hun­gry or in need.”

She was also re­mem­bered as “a very clean and neat per­son”, and as “al­ways the last to go to bed and the first to wake up”.

“She en­sured that we all had a good ed­u­ca­tion be­cause ac­cord­ing to her ‘I want you all to get what I never re­ceived in school’,” Wal­lace said.

In a trib­ute to her, Har­vey’s cousin, Dewright Johnson said, “The lady in the small house had a love that was pure. She was richer than all in the big house, she was stronger than the big house, and she had a love that was big­ger than any­one from the big house could en­dure”.

The spirit of Har­vey, also known as ‘Sis­ter Pun­cie’, lives on in her chil­dren; sis­ters Elsa, Yvonne, Jan­nett, Let­cie and Veta; broth­ers Er­rol, Rip­ton, Lin­ford, Beres­ford and Alves; 17 grand­chil­dren; three great­grand­chil­dren; three daugh­ters-in-law; and one grand­daugh­ter-in-law.

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