Wed | Oct 18, 2017

Footprints: Leslie John DePass - Passionate cricket lover crosses the boundary

Published:Tuesday | April 12, 2016 | 12:00 AM

Passionate cricket lover crosses the boundary

In the columbarium at St Luke's Church at Cross Roads, St Andrew, rests the ashes of Leslie John DePass.

They have been there since March 14, the day of his thanksgiving service.

The passionate lover of cricket had crossed the boundary on February 16.

He was born a tiny baby on June 2, 1926, to Edwin George DePass and Minna Jackson in St Andrew.

His mother died when he was six, so Leslie and his sister, Violet, were raised by his father, paternal grandmother and stepmother, Amy.

The baptised Roman Catholic's educational groundings were at St Francis Church at Nun's Pen, along Old Hope Road, St Andrew, from where he left to nearby St Simon College on scholarship.

Hugh Shearer was one of his contemporaries, and he was taught Latin by Samuel Carter, who eventually became archbishop.

After his success in the senior Cambridge examinations Leslie went to work at Masterton Limited, from which he moved to The Gleaner Company after beating many applicants for a proofreading job.

He also worked at City Printery, and The Daily News as chief proofreader; Herald Printery,and the Bank of Jamaica Printery as assistant printery manager up until his retirement.

Editing Jamaica Stock Exchange publications was a preoccupation after retirement.

The man who had developed a reputation as a first-class proofreader was a passionate lover of football, and cricket, which he played. But he was also committed to organising competitions for youth clubs and communities across the island. He was the secretary for many years of the organising committee of the Evelyn Cup, and was involved in the BOJ Cricket League.

The slender Depass also loved dancing, music, and beautiful women.

He was married to two of them, Valerie Prawl and Winnifred Dixon.

Five children came out of the unions - Danovan, Andrew, Dawn, Richard and Peter.

His wives predeceased him.

At the thanksgiving service, Richard remembered his father as a devoted husband and churchman, who was not materialistic.

"Indeed, to everyone with whom Daddy came into contact during the course of his life he was friendly, warm and caring. Like all men who walk this earth, he had his faults, but no one could describe him as being other than a true gentleman."

- Paul H. Williams