There is nothing anyone can say to console Sharon Miller after her grandson David Minott, a Wolmer’s Boys’ High School student, drowned during a beach trip at the Sommerset Falls in Hope Bay, Portland on Sunday.
Miller is disconsolate with grief, especially given the fact that the 15-year-old died just days before the family was set to celebrate his grandfather - reggae singer Sugar Minott’s birthday.
"David was Sugar Minott's life, he is the son of Lincoln Minott Jr. David graduated from Maverly as the valedictorian, his average for Physics last term was 96, this was no normal child," she said.
"He sings, draws, raps, he does everything well. For his SBA in Art, he drew a picture of his grandfather, he got 97 for that picture. He was involved in everything at Wolmer's, he was one of the brightest minds in Wolmer's. Two weeks ago, I got the report, two weeks ago, God. Literature is 96, And Maths is 100," Miller said, before collapsing into tears.
According to Miller, when her grandson initially told her about the trip, she had refused to send him, but later changed her mind and agreed to accompany him on the church him.
On the fateful day, Miller said she went down to Somerset Falls on a reconnaissance mission to determine how safe it would be for him.
Having seen her fellow church members and their children "sitting on the stone, water beating down on them, everybody having a good time, and I said this look alright".
She returned and gave David the go-ahead to traverse to the walls.
"They put the life jacket on him and put him on the boat to head to the falls, my last words to him were 'David, be careful'," she said.
Minutes later, there was an uproar, and people were running.
"Sister Miller, ah David, and mi drop down flat and mi see dem a run with David on stretcher. I was weeping. Eventually, they came to me and said 'Sister Miller, you have to go to the hospital, the doctors need some information' and from them say so, mi know David dead," she said.
It is reported that about 2:00 pm, Minott was among a group of people who went swimming. He was last seen alive sitting on a rock shortly before lifeguards found his body below the surface of the water. The lifeguard administered CPR, but Minott did not respond. He was transported to hospital where he was pronounced dead in the car that brought him there.
"I sat down with my grandson for over an hour in the car, I called him, I rolled, I hollered, I hugged him, I kissed him, I squeezed him close, I was calling him, just to see something happen, just to see him move. It didn't happen, I was there till his hands started to turn blue and then the police come...mi faint about ten times... I haven't eaten since Sunday," she said.
Miller now wants answers about her grandson's death.
"How David died, he should not have died. I spoke to the lifeguard. What he told me is that he was taking people down from the falls, and when he did the count, he said he should have 16 but he only had 15. So him swim the water, he saw the body and he went for it, and he took him out and pump him, that means David was there for a long time," Miller said.
Miller believes that David's life could have been saved.
Minott was well known at the school. He served as the Public Relations Officer for the Inter-Schools’ Christian Fellowship and was also a Passion and Purity rep at the institution.