Daddy’s girl has fond memories of Winston Witter
Kadie-Ann Witter Domville remembers well the eager anticipation that would seize her when her dad, Winston Witter, was coming to visit at her maternal grandparents’ home in Ocho Rios, St Ann.
Invariably, she would fall asleep before he arrived, only to be awakened by the sound of his voice as he sat on the bed beside her and engaged in discussion with her grandfather.
Then she would open her eyes and grab his attention.
“Daddy, you reach?” she said she would ask, eliciting the routine assurance from him: “Yes, remember, I told you I was coming.”
Witter, an academic, columnist, and talk-show host, died of cirrhosis at the University Hospital of the West Indies on February 16. He was 64.
One of the lasting lessons from Kadie-Ann Witter’s childhood was, she said, that he was a “man of his word”.
Witter Domville, his only child, was one of several persons who visited Perry’s Funeral Chapel in Spanish Town, St Catherine, on Saturday to pay their final respects as the body lay in repose.
The grieving daughter recalled that her father was always a stickler for rules and did not tolerate indiscipline.
“He was always there to correct you, and I am very appreciative of the correction because they have made me into who I am today,” Witter Domville, who works in the banking industry, said.
“I am very disciplined, and that is due to his influence as well as that of my grandparents who raised me. His impact, however, extends well beyond me to the entire Jamaica.”
Norman Witter, her uncle and Winston’s younger brother by two years, arrived from New York on Friday, where he said media houses had been paying tribute to the late talk-show host who once ruled daytime radio with his programme on KLAS FM. Norman told of the special bond they shared as the closest of siblings among nine brothers and seven sisters.
Following the 1998 crash in which Winston, who was a pillion rider on a motorbike, sustained head and other injuries after being struck by a car, the journalist spent a six-month convalescence at Norman’s home in the United States.
“He was a pacesetter, and the void he left will not be so easily filled. My brother will be remembered as a person who always advocated for the less fortunate, and in particular, poor people, to whom he gave a voice,” said Norman.
Witter Domville is particularly grateful for the quality time her six-year-old daughter was able to spend with her grandfather and the many memories she will also have of a man whose gift of gab endeared him to many Jamaicans.
The funeral will take place at the University Chapel in Mona, starting at 11 a.m., and will be preceded by a wake on Tuesday at the Louise Bennett Garden Centre from 6:30 p.m. t0 10 p.m.