French honour for Chee-a-tow
A BARBADIAN has been awarded one of France’s highest honours.
The title of Knight in the French National Order of Merit has been bestowed on Captain Don Chee-a-tow, who has served as honorary consul for France in Barbados for the last seven years.
Ambassador Philippe Ardanaz, of the St Luciabased Embassy of France to Barbados and the Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States, presented the insignia of “Chevalier de l’ordre National du Mérite” to Chee-a-tow in a recent ceremony, during a reception marking 59 years of diplomatic relations between Barbados and France.
The ceremony took place in the Walled Garden Theatre at the Barbados Museum.
Late French President Charles de Gaulle created the award in 1963 to reward people who have given distinguished service to France. Its membership, which numbers 185 000 worldwide, is always awarded by the president of the French Republic.
Acknowledging current President Emmanuel Macron’s decision to bestow the award on the Barbadian, Ardanaz said: “Captain
Don Chee-a-tow is the best representative France could have chosen in Barbados.” He praised him for his “dynamism” and “commitment” to seeing after the welfare of French citizens, and for his contribution to the enhancement of relations between France and Barbados.
Chee-a-tow now joins a league of distinguished personalities so honoured by France. They include King Juan Carlos I of Spain, former president of the Republic of Senegal Leopold Sedar Senghor, and famous
French oceanographer the late Jacques Cousteau.
HONORARY FRENCH CONSUL in Barbados, Captain Don Chee-a-tow (left), receiving the insiginia of Chevalier de l’ordre National du Merite from France’s Ambassador Philippe Ardanaz.