Sun | Dec 11, 2016

Bolt's grandma reflects on her beloved Falmouth

Published:Saturday | November 8, 2014 | 12:00 AM
Monica Davis

Western Bureau:

Despite the developments that have taken place in Falmouth, Trelawny, in recent years, for 82-year-old Monica Davis, grandmother of track superstar Usain Bolt, things were better in former times.

"In my days in Falmouth, you could walk the streets anytime," said Davis, who is affectionately known as 'Miss Monica' by residents of the seaside Georgian town. "Now you dare not take that risk ... it is no longer safe."

Davis, the mother of eight children, including Bolt's mother, Jennifer, has decades of sweet memories of Falmouth, where all her children were born.

"I have great memories of Falmouth ... I lived on Thorpe Street and then I moved to Cornwall Street," said Davis. "Jennifer is the fifth of my eight children and it is during my time in Falmouth they were all born."

Strong Christian values

While the fun-loving Bolt appears to enjoy a secular lifestyle, according to his grandmother, strong Christian values have always been an integral part of the family's heritage.

"I am a devoted Christian and my children grew up in an atmosphere of good Christian values. They are the persons they are today because of the Christian principles they were taught," said the lovable grandmother.

While her famous grandson is now a global superstar and is universally accepted as a living legend, having won a grand total of four individual Olympic Games gold medals and three World Championship gold medals, in addition to beating the 100m and 200m world records, she still sees Usain as her little grandson, who would curl up in anyone of his aunts' bed and sleep at any given time.

"He (Bolt) is no ordinary athlete. He is specially gifted," said the proud grandmother, "I don't believe Jamaica is doing enough to capitalise on his fame."

Like many residents of Falmouth, Davis does not relish the idea of the proposed statue of her grandson being mounted inside the Falmouth Cruise Ship Pier, where it would be off-limits to regular residents of the town.

"It would be an insult to the Jamaican people. It should be erected in Water Square," said Davis. "In Water Square, Jamaicans will be able to see it and it could also cause visitors off the cruise ships to come into the town."

As the town continues to evolve, Davis has one fervent wish for her beloved town and its residents.

"More than all, with all the developments taking place, I would love to see more jobs created," said Miss Monica. "That is my wish."

M.T.