Described as meticulous, argumentative and a lot of fun to be around, former journalism stalwart Ridley Greene was laid to rest at the Saint Barnabas Anglican Church yesterday afternoon.
In attendance at the funeral was his sister Hazel Green, his daughter Penney Greene as well as a sea of past colleagues in the media fraternity like Roxanne Brancker, Roy Morris and Al Gilkes.
The Nation was well represented by current staff members, including Chief Executive Officer Noel Wood, Editor-In-Chief Carol Martindale and News Editor Antoinette Connell.
Speaking on behalf of the Nation, Brancker described one of the leading figures in Barbadian journalism as “determined, strong-willed with what some would say was a touch of arrogance – those were the hallmarks of his personality”.
She recalled his incredible attention to detail.
“Ridley was indeed one of the architects of the Nation and just like an architect plans each detail of his layout, he meticulously designed the pages of the Nation’s stories. His design skills were unparalleled and he was the ultimate authority on anything related to layout and design. Ridley was also the author of the Nation style layout book which has influenced countless staff over the years, whether it be sub editors or journalists.”
Penney expressed in her eulogy a heartfelt goodbye to her father, saying that she wished she had more time with him. Such was his work ethic and his commitment to making sure the paper was error free and of the highest quality, she spent a large portion of her childhood in the editorial office of the Nation and even sleeping on the couch in Brancker’s office when it got really late.
Well known for his music, she gave some insight into what it was like to live with her father in that space.
“Riding in the car with my father meant I would be listening to what he considered ‘proper music’ and he was very rigid with what he considered to be such. Through my Dad, I developed an appreciation for Celtic music and Eric Clapham. My Dad has an album which he wrote and performed in various places. He was extremely proud of this album and played it on repeat in his car on the radio and if you drove with him often at that time, it meant you learnt the lyrics.”
Ridley Greene began his journey as a journalist in 1965 when he joined the Daily News as a sub editor. Six years later he was named Journalist of the Year by the Barbados Press Association. His 45-year career ended officially in 2010 after stints at the Nation, Barbados Today and Barbados Advocate, and his roles editing The Homemakers, Caribbean Traveller and the Gleaner.
He passed away on September 8 after a lengthy illness at age 77. (JC)