Victor Lewis called ‘Little Johnny’

With much anticipation, he looked forward to celebrating his 103rd birthday, when his children would make much fuss over him. He loved being spoiled by them and he loved the attention, the warmth, the outpouring of love by his children, some of whom traveled from distant lands, to celebrate with him.

Loading...

Victor Lewis, called ‘Little Johnny’ or ‘Old Police’, was born on February 25, 1917, to James Lewis called ‘Johnny Lewis’ and Rachel Albert, at Eversham Village.It is a short distance from his present address but he was nurtured by his paternal grandparents James and Mary Lewis at the very place he calls home.

At his Brigton Village, Corentyne home on Saturday, villagers and relatives, decked in the colour green which will match the décor for the gathering,at the special commemorative event in which ‘Little Johnny was honoured for being a committed father and the oldest man in the community.

Loading...

He credits his Creator for sparing his life, even as he urged youths to honour their parents so they too can have very long years of life.

In her presentation to her father of a symbolic arrangement,Lewis’ daughter Brenda Lewis highlighted that the hat and boot, along with the carpentry and joinery tools, were used daily to feed, clothe and house the family from sunrise to sunset, the shields represents his ability to produce twelve children.

Loading...

Mention was also made of his industrious spirit in which he supplemented the family’s income through the rearing of cattle and cultivation of coconut trees from where many products were derived..

Meanwhile, other villagers gathered, toasted to a longer life for the elderly man who never forgot his pension date. There were reflections. There was laughter. There was a sense of togetherness that brought various ethnic groups together. ‘Little Johnny’ as he is referred to by the elderly, laughed and shared jokes with a twinkle in his eye as an octogenarian woman placed a smack on his cheek. It was memorable.

MUST READ  Paper committal for KN’s security guards charged with murder
Loading...

During a discourse earlier, the centenarian recalled growing up with his cousin Eric.

“He was my cousin. We were children of two siblings. My grandparents were farmers. They cultivated ground provisions, corn, and bananas. We were never hungry, but if we were, we would just go to the farm, picks a few ripened bananas off the sucker or parch and pound corn before eating it with sugar.

Loading...

“Life was not as it is now. People farmed, and the villagers despite their ethnicity lived in unity. In those days if an African family had a function and did not invite their East Indian neighbour, that would be a big problem, and the uninvited person will inquire what was the reason for him/ or her not receiving an invitation, before presenting themselves. Life was so good, without the politicians,’ he chuckled, whilst clasping his hands between his legs.

The bespectacled gentleman in his formative years, attended that Eversham Primary School when James Henry was the Head Master.However, while he completed his schooling, he was unable to take the then School Leaving Examination, which was held at Rose Hall Scotts School in Rose Hall Town.

Loading...

“I cannot now remember, what prevented me from going to write the exams, but my now deceased friends Albert King and Marth Douglas, they were successful at the exams and had pursued higher learning resulting in them being educators. I became a carpentry apprentice, under the stewardship of ‘Brother Grant’ of Phillipi Village.

MUST READ  Indian seeking presidency of Guyana, in academic ‘fraud’

“As a small boy, I had visited the village shop and had observed Brother Grant, doing some carpentry, and he asked me whether I was interested and after responding in the affirmative, I started to learn the trade, and have since specialized in all areas of carpentry,” he said.

Loading...

According to the widower, his trade took him to many areas locally, including the mining town of Linden and Matthews Ridge in the North West District, and his marking is on all the multilateral schools, and other learning institutions, across the country. However, he was quick to add, that as soon as he received his wages, he would hurry off to the nearest post office, where he would send the money to his now deceased wife Monica, to assist in the maintenance of their eleven children namely Denzil, Eon, Victor Jnr, Eldon, Fay, now deceased, Wendy, Patricia, Brenda, Kim, Yonnette, and Denise.He also fathered a son, Leon, who resides overseas.

“I used to give towards the upkeep of my home, wife and children. I have not remarried although my wife died over thirty years ago.When you have a wife you have to give, and I am not able with that now,”he chuckled, whilst tilting his head backward.

Loading...

Along with the maintenance of his family, Lewis, an elder of the Brighton Presbyterian Church, said church attendance was a necessity rather than an option for his family.

“We had to go. Sunday is the day to serve the Lord.We have to look to our maker for everything. In these days, parents asking children if they would like to go to church. But, I was never taught that it was an option. It is a necessity,” he said.

MUST READ  DPP moves to quash Magistrate’s decision in Roxanne Myers election fraud cases
Loading...

The centenarian, who experienced short bouts of mental loss during the discourse, was quick to point out that as a youth he was a member of the Boy Scouts organization, which would instill values, just in case it was not instilled in the home.

“Trusting, Loyal, helpful brotherly, courteous, kind, obedient, smiling, thrifty, pure,”he trailed off as he recalled what was taught to him over ninety years ago.

Loading...

He recalled too, an incident which had rocked his village over thirty years ago when nine members of the Cummings family were killed under mysterious circumstances.

“The news had stated that a snake was killing the family, but it was not so. One of the young men had married a woman of another ethnicity and one of his sisters were in conflict with the woman, and as a result, they were subsequently poisoned.That story had placed our village in the news’,”he mused.

Loading...

That apart, the village which is bordered by Eversham and Kiltern, was known for its horse racing, but with time, the passion for the game has dwindled as, according to Lewis, the young men are not committed.”They want money, and more money, but, they are not committed when it comes to enhancing community relations, so with time, the interest in horse racing has gone,”he said.

However, although he has not left his home, as his feet cannot take his weight, and he needs assistance in putting on his shoes and other garments,Lewis is always updated with current events both local, regional and international.He concluded that deeds of kindness, and words of love can make this world a better place

Loading...

Leave a Reply