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12-year-old Hit-and-Run Accident Victim’s Family Looking for Answers — and Badly in Need of Assistance

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JUST five days before Garvin Henry celebrated his 12th birthday, tragedy struck — and his fun, laughter, joy, dreams and playing days at the Vide Boutielle Primary School came to an abrupt end, almost eliminating any opportunity of him one day becoming a scientist, or even, perhaps, the first Prime Minister to hail from Monchy.

After the accident, many felt all Garvin had left was only to die; and today he is bed-ridden with a depressed skull fracture — and partially blind — all because of a hit-and-run vehicular accident. [which took place between May 31st (Corpus Christi) and June 1st 2018.] ?

Image of Garvin Henry's grandmother, Alpha Francois. (PHOTO: Anthony De Beauville)
Garvin Henry’s grandmother, Alpha Francois. (PHOTO: Anthony De Beauville)

The VOICE spoke to Alpha Francois, Garvin’s grandmother, after seeing a flyer for a fund-raising Bar B Que to be held at the Vigie Multi-Purpose Sports Complex on Saturday 6th October for medical assistance on behalf of Garvin. She also gave details about her grandson’s condition three months — and counting — after the horrific accident.

“I was not present at the time of the accident, but when I received a call, I went to Victoria Hospital. When I arrived I did not see my grandson right away, because he was in ICU. In fact, he spent three months between ICU and the Pediatric Ward.”

Regarding the accident and how it all happened, she said, “I was not there, so I can’t say how it happened. All I know, is that my son was driving and there was another vehicle (a taxi) driving up behind him, and suddenly the vehicle slammed him from behind, only for my son’s vehicle to run into a wall. I was also told the driver of the other vehicle never stopped to see what happened. That is all the information I have”.

Francois continued, “As we speak, we have not received a call from the other driver, to at least say ‘Hey, excuse me, I am very sorry that happened.’”

“One month later, i received a call from a male. He said to me he was coming from north heading to Castries and he saw the vehicle speeding up behind my son’s vehicle and when he saw what happened he said to the other driver, ‘You hit him and you did not stop.’ The response was: ‘Do not get involved in that, because the Police know everything already. Leave them there for them to die’. This is what the driver of other car said he was told.”

In terms of the injury, Francois explained, “It’s very serious: head injury, brain injury… The doctor had to do surgery… and right now he has one side with a piece of skull and the other has none. The left eye is halfway blind, he can’t see anything. His left arm is broken and the doctor has to operate on it in December. The splinter — he had surgery on it right away when he arrived at hospital. His right hand and right foot are not moving. It was moving after the accident, but now I have no idea what caused it not to move anymore.”

She continued, “When my son went to VH to collect medication for him, the doctor informed him that the spine is on a side and all the time we spend at VH we never get to know about it…’”
According to her, “My grandson is home, he is not talking, not sitting, not walking, he is just home lying down on a bed. He is just a vegetable.”

Still with love in her heart and not showing any signs of animosity or anger at anyone, Francois said, “What I want to send out, there were two innocent people in the jeep that the person hit. If he thought it was only the driver on board, if he have a conscience and he have any children at all, I would like him to step forward to come and say ‘I am sorry and it was not my fault.’

“He can do that just for the sake of the two children. My grandson is 12 years, he misses out on Common Entrance, and he is just lying down there.

“If something had happen between the other driver and my son, at least he could have just leave it for when the sun rise the following day…”

With limited financial resources at their disposal, the family will be having a fund raising Bar B Que on Saturday 6th October in the car park of Vigie Multi-Purpose Sports Complex (Vigie).

Francois said, “He is home and all he wears are pampers. We have to wash for him every day. He uses a tube in his nose and we have to change it every week.

“We are having the fund-raising activity to raise the much-needed funds to take care of him. We simply cannot take care of him on our own — and we have to help ourselves.”

Francois made a special appeal to members of the public to come out and support this worthy venture.

Meanwhile, to endorse what Francois told the VOICE in terms of Garvin’s medical condition, an official letter detailing his conditions is in the family’s possession the family and signed by Dr. Amanda Louis, House Officer and Dr. Ira. J. Simmons, Consultant Pediatrician, both of Victoria Hospital.

According to the ‘letter, Garvin needs continuous care, which includes medical and economic assistance’ and ‘Any assistance to Garvin and his family would be greatly appreciated.’

Anthony De Beauville is The VOICE Publishing Company’s multi-award winning sports journalist. He works closely with a number of sports federations including the Department of Youth Development and Sports, the Saint Lucia Olympic Committee and other organizations.

He covers and contributes articles highlighting the areas of international, regional, national, community based clubs and schools sporting activities. There is never an off day as he stays busy... Read full bio...

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