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Elks Salute Haynes Cyril – Credit Union Pioneer

World War II veteran, Haynes Cyril, at the War Memorial in Derek Walcott Square. [Photo: Stan Bishop]

World War II veteran, Haynes Cyril, at the War Memorial in Derek Walcott Square. [Photo: Stan Bishop]
World War II veteran, Haynes Cyril, at the War Memorial in Derek Walcott Square. [Photo: Stan Bishop]
Thursday will be observed as International Credit Union Day and the Board of Directors, Management and Staff of the Elks City of Castries Cooperative Credit Union Ltd takes this opportunity to honour Mr. Haynes Cyril, a founding and current member, also past President of the Credit Union.

According to Mr. Cyril, the Credit Union was born out of a fraternal organization that was at the time headed by Anthony Robinson with him being second in command. The organization owned their premises on Water Works Road. In trying to expand the organization Robinson had the plan to establish the organization as a Credit Union with his encouragement. While the majority of the membership at that time was looking for development and expansion some officers were looking to see what they could extract for themselves. Consequently, the plan to establish the Credit Union had to be suspended.

With Robinson taking ill and officers of the fraternity also being suspended, Cyril took on the mantle of ensuring that the Robinsons dream to establish the Credit Union became a reality. He continued the introduction of non-members of the fraternity into the Credit Union which realized an increase in the membership of the Elks Credit Union.

Cyril recalls his invitation to a conference at the Grande Lodge after he had assumed leadership of the Elks Credit Union where he spoke highly of the new establishment since the fraternity had been closed down. Though he was asked to get the members of the Credit union to re-open the fraternity his attempt failed as the majority were not interested.

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Today the Elks City of Castries Cooperative Credit Union Ltd, registered on March 16, 1967 has opened its doors to anyone either working or living in the city of Castries and its environs and though born out of a Fraternity, is no longer associated to a fraternity. The Credit Union currently has in excess of 5000 members built on the foundation set by the founding members in the likes of Haynes Cyril.

An avid and committed Credit Union member, Cyril was born on November 12, 1921 and is also the oldest living member of the Elks Credit Union. He still visits the Credit Union frequently gracefully climbing the stairs like a robust 20 year old. He would also take time to sit and reminisce about the days of “Elks” with lots of memories that could have you listening on forever, whilst marvelling at the modern entity that has evolved since he stepped aside as President.

A gentleman and member with amazing memory; the Board of Directors, Management and Staff of the Elks Credit Union salute Haynes Cyril.

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