Adrian Frater, News Editor
Left: Grieving Cornwall College students carry the coffin of the late Omroy Wilson from the St. James Parish Church following yesterday's funeral. Wilson, a national youth player and captain of the school's daCosta Cup football team, was killed in a car crash two weeks ago. - CONTRIBUTED. Right: Omroy Wilson. - RICHARD MORAIS/ FREELANCE PHOTOGRAPHER
FORMER NATIONAL youth footballer, Omroy Wilson, who perished
in a car crash in Trelawny two weeks ago, was eulogised as an exemplary leader
and an exceptional human being at a sombre funeral at the St. James Parish Church,
in Montego Bay, yesterday.
The 18-year-old Wilson, who captained the 2006 Cornwall College daCosta Cup team, was hailed by schoolmates, teachers, family, friends and football officials as a dynamic youngster, who had the rare distinction of attaining excellence in both sports and
"He was a well-rounded youngster, who could rightly be described as a national treasure," said Clement Radcliffe, the president of the Inter-Secondary School Sports Association (ISSA), to rousing cheers from the jam-packed congregation. "Jamaica has not only lost a gifted footballer but also an academic star."
Others paying tribute to Wilson's exceptional football talent, which earned him places on the national Under-17, Under-20 and Under-23 teams as well as a starting place on Village United's Wray & Nephew NPL side, included national Technical Director, Wendell Downswell; St. James FA President, Lennox Wallace, and members of the Cornwall College team that he led.
DESTINED FOR GREATNESS
"Omroy was a youngster who led an impeccable life and he was without doubt the best captain in the entire national football programme," said Downswell. "With his many fine qualities, he was one that was definitely destined for greatness."
Against the backdrop of the coffin, which was draped in the red and gold colours of Cornwall College, the president of the school's parent-teacher association, Henry McCurdy, presented a trophy to the school in Wilson's honour. The trophy will be presented annually to a student who displays outstanding qualities in both sports and academics.
Wilson, who passed six CXC subjects last year and was in the final stages of preparation to take up a sports/academic scholarship in the United States, was killed on the night of Saturday, May 27, when the car he was driving climbed an embankment in Clarke's Town, Trelawny, and overturned.
Stephen Blake, the son of former reggae singer-turned-Christian minister, Paul Blake, who was in the car with Wilson at the time, brought a number of persons to tears as he recounted how Wilson battled bravely for his life after the accident. Even more tears were shed when he sang a brilliant rendition of the song, God is Standing By, in tribute to Wilson.
In the sermon, the Rev. Phillip Gordon challenged Wilson's friends and those who have grown to appreciate his exemplary lifestyle to do like he did and give their lives to God. According to him, the opportunities missed in life cannot be recovered in death.
Wilson's body was interred at the Dovecot Memorial Park, in St. James. Thousands of mourners travelled to graveside to pay their final respects.