Wed | Aug 16, 2017

'Vinroy completed our circle' - Family struggles with the loss of a loved one to crime

Published:Tuesday | March 7, 2017 | 3:00 AMPaul Clarke
Vinroy Smith
Karen Smith-Robertson
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It has been two years since 20-year-old Vinroy Smith was shot and killed by unknown assailants at his rented house in Albion, St James, but his murder remains a seriously depressing pill for family, especially his mother and father, to swallow.

But, it's the words of one of his sisters, Karen Smith-Robertson, that best capture the mood of a family, still struggling to come to grips with the bitter reality of Vinroy's death.

"When Vinroy was alive, it was like we had our own little circle. He completed our circle," said Smith-Robertson. "Since they murdered him in cold blood, it is now like a sea. Each day brings a different tide, never-ending, never forgotten."

Smith was the only son in a family of eight children for Rose and Paul Smith, who reside in Wait-A-Bit, Trelawny. According to Smith-Robertson, he was the one with boundless prospects and potential to make good out of life.

"My brother was full of energy and a hard worker. No one ever thought this was how his life would end, as he was never involved in nefarious activities at all. At 20, they took his life and the family is yet to get over his death," she said.

At the time of his death, Smith was employed at Margaritaville, in Montego Bay. He also worked in the business processing outsourcing sector as a call agent.

Having left the mainly farming community in the hills of southern Trelawny for a better life in the city, he settled in Albion with his girlfriend, as the low rent there was what they could afford to pay.

 

Ran from the room

 

But on August 26, 2015, everything changed. Smith and his girlfriend were at home when gunmen entered their room and shot him several times. He ran from the room and collapsed outside where he died.

"That day changed our lives forever," said Smith-Robertson. "When I got the call from his girlfriend that he was shot dead, it stung me in a way I can never forget. That morning and what I was told will stay with me forever.

"This was my little brother; shot dead. How was the family to manage, because he was the star for us; He was jovial, caring and a loving soul," continued a teary-eyed Smith-Robertson. "He died one month after his 20th birthday and two years later we still struggling with it."

'Good people are killed mercilessly every day'

Rose and Paul Smith continue to suffer with the loss of their only son. Each month, the still grieving dad treks over to the family plot to clean away shrubs and dirt from Vinroy's grave site. Every time he goes there, he sheds new tears.

"No father or mother should be in this position, where they have to bury their child. Not like this," said the elder Smith.

"Good people are killed mercilessly every day and no one knows why. It is hard for my family to understand why dem killed Vinroy. His mother each and every day remembers him. Sisters, cousins' uncles, aunts, we all remember Vinroy and it is the saddest thing containing our hurt," continued Smith.

Rose Smith has been battling depression, pain and hurt since her son was murdered.

"I cannot express what I feel; I am deeply hurting still. This family has been hurting over this and we still don't know why," said Mrs Smith as the tears flowed down her face.

Smith-Robertson is urging the police to use all available resources to bring the perpetrators of crime to justice to ease the hurt families like hers feel every day.