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Celebrating the red, white and blue

Published:Friday | July 11, 2014 | 12:00 AM
Donald Pohlman escorts his chargé d'affaires wife, Elizabeth 'Lee' Martinez, into the Independence reception. - photos by Winston Sill/Freelance Photographer
Chief of Defence Staff Major General Antony Anderson joins Justine Henzell on the red carpet.
Robert Pickersgill is deep in what appears to be intriguing conversation with Denise Herbol at The United States of America Embassy 238th anniversary of Independence reception.
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Jody-Anne Lawrence, Staff Reporter

Last Thursday, the fourth of July celebrations by the United States Embassy in St Andrew was in full swing - honouring the red, white and blue.

Chargé d'affaires at the embassy, Elizabeth 'Lee' Martinez, was the first to speak about the 238th anniversary of the Independence of the United States of America. This was something to be proud of and the room, adorned in red, white and blue, translated that perfectly. However, the highlight of the night was the tribute to former secretary of state with Jamaican parentage, Colin Powell.

A mural that covered an entire panel of the embassy was created in his honour. Named 'Folded Sky, Homage to Colin Powell', it was created by Dorothea Rockburne a Canada-born American artist. The piece is said to depict the sky at the time of Powell's birth.

In a recording played for guests, Powell said he was not only honoured, but humbled by the tribute.

The celebrations continued with Minister of National Security Peter Bunting speaking of the great relationship the United States has had with Jamaica over the past 50 years.

On the eve of the official Independence Day, Martinez who celebrated her country's independence for the first time in Jamaica, said that what she would miss most about celebrating at home would be the fireworks and barbecues.

"I will miss the fireworks, of course, but what I will miss most are the barbecues. If I was back home, we would have a backyard barbecue with family and friends, and that is the major difference." However, she was looking forward to her celebrations in Jamaica. Here are the highlights.