Sun | Oct 22, 2017

Footprints: Leetie Bennett - A life more than work

Published:Tuesday | June 9, 2015 | 12:00 AM

Born in the cool hills of Epping Farm in St Thomas, Leetie Bell Bennett was the second child of Clarence Morris and Naomi Stanley.

But even before she could bond with her mother, death ripped those loving arms from around her. Leetie was only 18 months old.

Angelia Williams, her godmother from the nearby community of Mavis Bank, adopted the young Leetie and raised her as one of her own.

She now had three sisters - Mabel, Joy, and Qutie - who were younger. She very often had to be the big sister, deputising as mother on many occasions.

She was a very humble person, one who would avoid quarrels.

She attended the Mount Fletcher Elementary School and was a model student.

After leaving school, Leetie returned to Epping Farm as a teenager, and it was there that she met Cyrus Stewart, who would become the father of the first of three children, Doreen.

Leetie left Epping Farm for Morant Bay in 1963. Her mission was to get employment. She worked as a domestic worker, doing so with pride, dignity, and commitment.

Along the way, she met the fathers of her other two children, Rachael and Michael.

However, it was one Sylford Bennett who stole her heart, and in 1975, these love birds got married. They remained together until the death of Bennett in 1984.

With the death of her husband, Leetie, who had left the labour force in order to be the best homemaker she could be was once again on the job hunt.

She accepted a job at Williams & Sons Funeral Home and performed her tasks with pride, dedication, and commitment.

She held her job at Williams for more than 25 years until ill-health forced her to retire.

Her life was more than work. She enjoyed being around family and she always had stories to tell about her ancestors.

She had no time for grudges, envy, or malice.

She was calm, easy-going, and was the family doctor.

She cared for her grandchildren and great-grands, and if anyone was sick, she always had a bush remedy.

She left behind three children and their spouses, 10 grandchildren, five great-grandchildren, three sisters, and a host of other relatives and friends.

Have you recently lost a loved one whose footprints you want documented in this feature? Please send tributes, eulogies and photographs to Footprints@gleanerjm.com