Dad can't stop crying

Protesters urge motorists to stop speeding after teen mowed down by bus

BY RACQUEL PORTER
Observer staff reporter
porterr@jamaicaobserver.com

Tuesday, January 15, 2019

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Androw Taylor is a broken man.

Since last Friday when his second son, 13-year-old Rhidgeaune Taylor, was mowed down by a bus in Friendship Pen, St Thomas, the grief-stricken father has not stopped crying.

Taylor told the Jamaica Observer that he even went to his son's room yesterday morning hoping that the St Thomas Technical High School student would be there.

“When me go and see the uniform, everything move inna mi body, mi get nervous. Mi tek up him uniform and start rub it. Mi start tremble, mi say 'Jesus, look how Rhidgeaune fi go a school and this happen',” Taylor related to the Observer, adding that he misses his morning routine.

“Every Monday morning I would normally wake him up and tell him to go have a shower to go to school while I get his breakfast ready. We run a cook shop, so I would put on a little fast pot for him and my little granddaughter, because the two of them go to the same school. If mi nuh do breakfast, mi normally do cup noodles and then them gone,” Taylor explained.

His wife, Claudia Robinson-Taylor, told the Observer that Rhidgeaune had accompanied one of his friends to a nearby shop and was standing along the thoroughfare when he was hit by a 'Spongebob bus' heading towards Morant Bay from Kingston, approximately 8:00 pm.

He was taken to Princess Margaret Hospital where died while undergoing treatment.

Explaining that he had not slept or eaten since Friday evening, the father said he last saw the teenager about 4:00 pm that day and recalled their last conversation while they were picking ackees.

“I was telling him about my life. I was just telling him that he can't just go away and I don't know where he is. Sometimes him go kick some ball with his friends; is not like I don't want him not to have friends. I was just telling him that not all friends are good because a lot of friends lead you to stray and lead you into problem. I was explaining to him that friends led me to stray when I was his age,” the father continued

“He said he was not feeling well and I told him to take a pill. Him say him need food to take the pill. Same time he came up on the road where I have the cook shop and he got the food. His friend came by and he left with his friend,” Taylor said.

The father also said he had not gone inside the house prior to yesterday morning. Instead, he spent the three nights since Friday at the shop.

“Mi go down go hold a fresh this morning 'cause each time mi go a the gate — 'cause a him mi normally call — is just tears,” Taylor said.

Yesterday, residents staged a demonstration, protesting the teenager's death. The protesters, including children, called for motorists to cut their speed when travelling through the community.

Commanding officer for the St Thomas Division of the Jamaica Constabulary Force, Superintendent Marlene Wilson Christie, told the Observer that the driver is in custody.


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