BY Caribupdate Weekly
Every year, awards are presented to Grenadian nationals, ostensibly for success in various fields of achievements and for exceptional service. The recognition could range from our own awards’ presentation on Independence Day onFebruary 7, to British Empire Awards such as the OBE, CBE and MBE.
Many are baffled at how awardees are chosen; and some, including us at Caribupdate Weekly, are trying to understand the relevance and the embrace that are afforded the Empire Awards, given that the one in whose name the awards are being given – Queen Elizabeth II – does not know any of the nominees; and cannot in any wise vouch for the authenticity of any of the claims being made in the nominees’ name. But, be that as it may, while our various awards’ systems remain, we may want to take a closer examination to how nominations are made to these awards at home and abroad. This newspaper makes this recommendation against the backdrop of the death, and Friday’sfuneral, of Nadica McIntyre. If anyone was deserving of any number of awards, it would have been the 62-year-old Nadica McIntyre.
In death, it’s always easy for everyone – including lifetime foes – to laud the deceased. However, we believe that the accolades bestowed on McIntyre since her passing last month are genuine and fitting. Through her strength of character, diligence, work ethic, pursuit of educational enhancement and faith in God, McIntyre rose from humble beginnings in Grand Anse – the first child of nine – to hold jobs at very senior levels of the Grenada public service.
McIntyre’s resume includes that of Cabinet Secretary; Permanent Secretary; Supervisor of Elections; Ombudsman; non-resident ambassador to Cuba; and Coordinator at the Eastern Caribbean Supreme Court Mediation Project. She also was a teacher at the Grand Anse Roman Catholic School and librarian at Radio Grenada.
Glynis Roberts served two terms as parliamentary representative for Grand Anse and other communities of South St George’s. She knew McIntyre through their interaction in the government service and through sports. McIntyre’s death, according to former Tourism Minister Roberts, is “a great loss to our country’’.
Former Culture Minister Arley Gill, who was a cabinet colleague of Roberts, says he can testify that McIntyre was indeed a “wonderful human being’’, adding that he always will remember her smile.
For Nisha McIntyre, who knew Nadica intimately, she was not just her mother but also her “very best friend’’. Her mother, she says, was someone who, “wherever she could, even through the simplest of gestures, would always open her kitchen, her closet, her network, and her purse to helping others get by – this she did at times without ever being asked to’’.
Nisha McIntyre, in eulogizing her mother, said: “I can go on and on extolling the many successful roles my mother personified during her short but rather impactful journey on earth. However, I would much rather focus on the core of her persona – her heart. To know Nadica, was to love her. She had a quiet, humble demeanour, and a hearty laugh that filled every room.’’
Nadica McIntyre also occupies a unique place in sports in Grenada. Like most other Grenadians, she began her involvement in sports – as an athlete and administrator – at the community and school levels. Senator Ray Roberts remembers McIntyre when they both were involved in the Grand Anse Progressive Youth Organization. He says McIntyre was one of the “live wires’’ of the community, and one of greatest ever contributors to life in Grand Anse.
Many athletes have had the good fortune and privilege to represent Grenada in one sporting discipline; a few have done so in two sports. McIntyre was a three-sport national athlete. She represented Grenada in cricket, netball and table tennis. McIntyre, the 1981 Grenada Sportswoman of the Year, also was a regional cricket administrator and played for the West Indies women’s team. At the time, she was just the second Grenadian to be selected to a Windies women’s team. The first was Joan Alexander.
Sports Minister Roland Bhola believes that many in Grenada, Carriacou and Petite Martinique already are “feeling the void’’ left by McIntyre’s death.
“I think we can use her as perfect example as to how all of us can make our contribution towards nation building in whatever field we’re involved in,’’ says Bhola.
And, Caribupdate Weekly agrees with the National Democratic Congress who has called McIntyre an “outstanding Grenadian daughter’’.
Well done, Nadica McIntyre! May you Rest in Peace.