Last Sunday evening, a dear member of our family died throwing us off balance. We are still grappling with the enormity of this tragic event and wondering how to appropriately respond to this new void in the social fabric of St. Lucia.
Mr. Guy Ellis’ death is a loss that hits home, as he was a member of our family, THE VOICE Newspaper, becoming a member in 1962, while still a teenager. When he left us 32 years later in 1994 to start The Mirror Newspaper, he never left us completely, maintaining the kind of relationship with us that close knitted family members hold on to when they leave the family home.
Ellis came back to us in 2015, happy to be back on familiar grounds, for a three-year stint, leaving for the last time in 2018 but still working with us at his home. His sudden death came as a devastating shock, not only to us, but to the wider St. Lucia population. We grieve. It is incredibly difficult to accept his loss.
We have lost not just a family member, but a pillar of society who has left in his wake, a legacy of mentoring young people, making them push beyond their limited horizons. In the field of journalism, he was a force to be reckoned with, transforming many budding journalists into the communication specialists they are today.
Many of us in THE VOICE family and outside that circle hold cherished memories of our time with Mr. Ellis, and as we reach out to his wife Tina, children and others that make up his immediate family, we know that they will hold those cherished memories in their hearts as they seek comfort in the days ahead., The finality of death of a loved one is always difficult to accept. When the passing is sudden and unexpected the range and intensity of emotions multiply a hundredfold.
Like many who have lost a loved one through death, we did feel anger, misery, pain and confusion when the news broke that Guy to some people, Ellis to others, and Mr. Ellis to the rest of us, had passed. We floundered for a bit. The editorial department Monday morning drifted without a hand on the steering wheel, as we all pondered on the sad news.
We take comfort in knowing that despite the sudden death of Mr. Ellis, he lived a full life that was impactful. Guy Ellis was not only a journalist par excellence, he was a pillar of his church, a teacher, an historian and, above all, a kind, giving and fair man.
What happens after death is not for us to expound on, however, the bible gives insights on that subject, as Mr. Ellis, the bible Christian we knew him to be, was well aware of. ‘For the living know that they will die but the dead know nothing’ (Ecclesiastes 9:5).
And so, as we say goodbye to Mr. Ellis, this most illustrious son of the soil, we take comfort in the fact that his legacy will live on in those he had the privilege of being his students.
Goodbye Mr. Ellis, until.