Wed | Oct 17, 2018

Fay Tortello dies

Published:Thursday | August 4, 2016 | 12:00 AM
Fay Tortello, sister of former Prime Minister Edward Seaga.

Fay Tortello, former Italian consul to Jamaica and sister of former Prime Minister Edward Seaga, passed away peacefully at the Tony Thwaites Wing of the University Hospital of the West Indies on August 1, three days short of her 85th birthday.

A savvy businesswoman, as consul she brokered a number of projects between the Italian and Jamaican governments, including the rehabilitation of Jamaica Public Service power plants in Old Harbour and the upgrading of the Bustamante Hospital for Children, the latter at no cost to Jamaica.

Tortello, known for having a dynamic and forceful personality, became a favourite caller to the late Wilmot 'Mutty' Perkins' radio talk show when she argued with him, sometimes daily, on a range of topical issues in the 1990s. She often used a keen sense of humour to sharpen her strong political points. Her voice was easily identifiable as she was the only one to call him by the nickname 'Willy'.

'Mrs T', as she was widely known, was not one for sitting on large committees or boards. Instead, she often quietly helped friends in need and supported causes in which she believed.

Tortello leaves behind three children - sons George and Philip Crimarco, and daughter Rebecca Tortello Greenland - seven grandchildren and three great-grandchildren.