Noel Thompson, Freelance Writer
Justice of the Peace for St. James, Hazel Dalley (left), receives a token of appreciation from Premier of Bermuda, Alexander Scott, during a courtesy call at his office recently. Ms. Dalley was invited to Bermuda by the government to participate in the Bermuda Regiment's 45th anniversary celebrations. - Contributed
IT IS not very often that you find someone who has a penchant for giving tirelessly and never seems to get weary. Hazel Dalley is a true example.
Ms. Dalley is the proprietor of Dalley's Variety Store, situated along Gloucester Avenue in Montego Bay.
"I love people. The only way to be successful in life is to help others," Ms. Dalley said.
Known for her profound generosity, caring attitude and her willingness to volunteer both for the wider community and primarily for the police at impromptu moments, Ms. Dalley is referred to as the 'Mother of the St. James Police Division' and by extension the Area One Police Division and the Bermuda Regiment.
Aunt Haze, as she is affectionately called, was born in Paisley, St. James. In 1965, she established a variety store to cater to the needs of tourists visiting Montego Bay. Her shrewd business sense has seen her development into a stalwart in the tourism industry. But what she is better known for is her consistency in volunteering for the betterment of individuals and organisations both locally and regionally.
Entering her business premises, the walls in the hallway and her office are plastered with numerous accolades commending her for contributing to the development of the city of Montego Bay, as well as the youth.
Last year, then Governor-General Sir Howard Cooke, conferred the Order of Distinction on her. She also holds an award from the Lions Club of Montego Bay for a Lifetime of Community Service and Dedication to the Youth of Montego Bay, an award from the Sovereign Military Order Knights of Malta of Ontario, Canada and an award from the Bermuda Regiment, among several others all for community development and humanitarian services.
Six years ago, she launched the St. James Police Football Competition, which saw police personnel across various divisions competing for the Hazel Dalley Trophy and cash prizes. This competition is expected to resume in the coming months, after a short break.
"This is the first and only all police competition sponsored by a single individual. You can never find a person who loves all police across the board so genuinely," stated Deputy Superintendent Paul Stanton, St. James' administrative officer.
She is the most popular 'commissioner' and is a lady of the century. There has never been any like her and there is none to come," D.S.P. Stanton said.
Major Glenn Brangman, formerly of the Bermudan Military, now an adviser to that government, said Miss Dalley is highly respected by the government and people of Bermuda. Ms. Dalley's office serves as an unofficial base for Bermudan officials when they visit Jamaica for training, business and official business.
"Dalley's Variety Store serves as the Bermudan Embassy in Jamaica. That is no joke. She is very powerful when it comes to Bermuda and its people. She is amazing. It's so hard to believe there is so much love coming from a lady of her stature. She has influenced the lives of the people of Bermuda, the government and the police force," Major Brangman said.