Hundreds bid farewell to ex-‘Guardian’ editor

Michelle Doodhai
Date Published: 
Trinidad Guardian

Southerners yesterday bade farewell to sporting and community leader and former Guardian editor John Alleyne.

Hundreds of mourners overflowed from Our Lady of Perpetual Help RC Church on Harris Promenade, San Fernando, where the funeral service was held.

Delivering the homily, Fr Clyde Harvey said Alleyne was a journalist committed to “bigging up” the country.

He urged fellow journalists to build on the foundation Alleyne began, despite the obstacles.

Harvey said journalists should always “maintain the highest standard and use communication to lift us up rather than bring us down”.

Alleyne’s daughter Jerry Alleyne-Nagee, who delivered the eulogy, said her father’s lesson from his experiences, beginning as an “office boy in short pants” at the Guardian was, “whatever you do, do it to the best of your ability”.

She said the father of seven was a believer in commitment to one’s organisation, and he did so as a journalist, sports analyst, sports editor and bureau chief with the newspaper during his 50-year tenure.

Alleyne-Nagee said Alleyne lived for San Fernando, its people and institutions, so much so that he refused his “green card” in the early 80s because he wanted to give more to the city.

“He was unrelenting in his quest to make San Fernando the pride of this nation, and his battles were innumerable,’ she said.

“Undaunted by opponents to his unshakable vision, he hammered home his views, from pen to pulpits, from borough and city hall to political platform.”

She said Alleyne was also fiercely committed to young people and offered them encouragement, coaching lessons, sporting gear and monetary contributions.

His involvement in sporting activities led to him soaring to several positions such as president of the T&T Football Association and Southern Football Association. It even earned him the Humming Bird Gold Medal in 1978.

Rudolph Thomas, president of the SFA, said the greatest tribute which can be paid to Alleyne is to continue to ensure young people are cared for in all sports.

Alleyne was buried at Paradise cemetery, San Fernando.