A father’s love for his daughter was recognised last Sunday as two men, miles apart, finally met and were able to share that bond together at the Faith Wesleyan Holiness Church, Jackmans Main Road, St Michael.
Vice president of the Barbados Ex-Police Association of New York, Lionel Hutchinson, along with six members of the organisation donated an undisclosed sum of money from the Barbados Ex-Police Association, the Barbados Support Group (New York) through the Consul General, the association’s president Wesley Hope, and Janelle and LeRoy Hutchinson, to the family of Sherika Browne who passed away in November 2020, following her bout with lupus.
A tearful Hutchinson said on May 17, 2019, he happened to be reading the Weekend Nation when he saw Sherika’s story, one he still kept and would keep until his dying day.
“It hit me so hard . . . . What I recognised was the foundation she had at this church, but there were astronomical bills, if I recall $22 000 in bills. You the congregants at this church stepped up and helped Sherika in a very meaningful way; a way you don’t find too often in churches,” he said.
Hutchinson said his daughter Janelle suffered from the same debilitating disease, and along with the association, they started a drive on Sherika’s behalf. He said he was supposed to travel to Barbados to see Sherika in 2020, but COVID-19 delayed all such intentions.
“I was so full of enthusiasm to meet this young lady who would have done so much in such a short space of time. But we know Sherika is in God’s hands in heaven, doing God’s work. I met with Mr Browne, and we shared and we cried; he is my new brother. We share a common denominator; that love for our daughter,” he said.
Sherika’s father, former pastor at Faith Wesleyan Holiness, Stanley Browne and his wife Margaret thanked all who donated to them.
“This moment became a reality because of the NATION newspaper. It was meant to come to Sherika personally, but COVID-19 stepped in. She cannot see them but I am sure if she was here this morning she would have deeply appreciated it,” Margaret said, before the two men embraced. (RA)