Sun | May 31, 2020

Footprints | Caroline Gardener - A true woman of God

Published:Monday | December 5, 2016 | 12:00 AM

On August 8, 1940, Amos and Adlyn Davis welcomed their daughter Caroline into their hearts and the world.

She was the 14th child of 17.

Since then, the little village of Roses Valley in St Elizabeth has been touched by the life of this remarkable woman, Carolyn Gardener, who has been eulogised as a true woman of God.

Carolyn was a devout Christian; she has been lauded as one of the founding members of the Bethabra Baptist Church. She credited her faith in God and her involvement in church with all her successes. She often boasted that when she stopped going to school as a result of the teasing she received because of her hearing impediment, it was at Sunday school that she learned to read and write.

'Stacarrie', as she was affectionately called, believed in giving. She made her livelihood from farming, but some persons believed that she gave away more of her produce than she sold. Her meals were always prepared with enough to spare for passers-by. Her apron pockets always had sweets, which she generously shared. She gave not only what she had, but gave of herself as well. She enjoyed her duty of cleaning the church. She always had an encouraging word. Even when she became indigent, those who visited her always left with a renewed spirit.

Caroline had a special gift; she had a discerning spirit which was sustained by her deep spiritual life in Christ. She could often tell when something was going to happen even before it did. This was often a marvel, especially to unbelievers. She was also feared and revered, because if you did anything wrong, whenever you visited her, she was able to tell you. However, she was never judgemental.

Her union with Mr Laddy Gardener produced six children. They have extended the line to include 15 grand- and seven great-grandchildren. Her husband, one child and 15 siblings predeceased her. She leaves to mourn her, her children, grand- and great-grandchildren, one sister and a host of other relatives and friends. On August 19, 2016, Caroline Gardener wrote the final line in that chapter of her life, but her footprints remain to guide those who will follow in her path.