JEREMIAH BARRINGTON Baker, the former general manager of the Jamaica Civil Aviation Authority Air (JCAA) Traffic Control Centre on Winchester Road in Kingston, was laid to rest on Friday, November 16. He was 56 years old.
Approximately 350 persons attended his funeral at Webster Memorial United Church, Half-Way Tree Road, at 1 p.m.
He leaves behind wife Stephanie, daughters Pia, Khallia, and Jasiel, brother Joslyn, and sister, Joy, who flew in from London for the service. His parents, Kenneth Baker and Rubena Walters, had predeceased him.
Among those in attendance were his adopted parents, Evangelist William 'Billy' Hall, and wife Marjorie, both of whom flew in from Miami for the funeral.
Barrington's adopted aunt and neighbour, Beverley Ulett, who read the eulogy, said 'Jerry', as he was affectionately called, would be remembered for having many roles: husband, father, brother, son, educator, union negotiator, motivator, office manager and company director.
Ulett said Barrington, in his childhood and teen years, attended Sunday school at Galilee Gospel Hall and later Swallowfield Chapel. Scholastically, he showed early promise when he did well in the Common Entrance Examination while at Harbour View Primary, and from there went to Kingston College, where he excelled and from where Jamintel recruited him for their office and then for further training in Barbados, and then England.
In the process he gained a bachelor's degree in telecommunication from the University of the West Indies, and several years later from Barry University in Florida, as well as a master's degree in business administration.
During the 25 years he stayed with Jamintel, he excelled in leadership and management and, in 2003, was seconded by Aeronautical Telecommunications Limited as general manager of JCAA.
However, in February 2007, he was diagnosed with Lou Gehrig's disease and, for six years following, was bedridden until his passing. But throughout those six years, Ulett said, he was always positive and cheerful, never complaining, and inspired those who visited him.
She closed with these words, "God alone has final answers and to God we commit all things. But inasmuch as we may venture within our limited judgement an opinion as to his final resolution of spiritual life issues, we who knew Jerry closely are prepared to say we are more confident than diffident."
Other remembrances were given my his wife Stephanie, Dr Patrick Dallas on behalf of his alma mater Kingston College, and Dr Lloyd Carney, on behalf of the 'guys' of Liguanea Avenue where Jerry lived during most of his formative years.
The sermon was delivered by the Astor Carlyle, who exhorted the congregation to have a three-dimensional view of life, encouraging all to look within, to look without, and to look up. "The true meaning of life is primarily from looking up," he said, "for that is about the relationship we have with God."
Carlyle and Dwight Kelly officiated at the interment, at the premises.