Mahdia tragedy: 11 girls laid to rest in Micobie

horrific fire at the female dormitory of the Mahdia Secondary School in Region Eight (Potaro- Siparuni), 11 girls were laid to rest in Micobie.

They are: Natalie Bellarmine, Andrea Roberts, Lorita Williams, Nickleen Robinson, Sherlyn Bellarmine, Lisa Robert, Cleoma Simon, Tracil Thomas, Delecia Edwards, Arianna Edwards and Sherana Daniels.

And these girls were the last set of children who perished in the recent fire to be buried.

President Dr. Irfaan Ali with some of the grieving families in Micobie (Photo: Office of the President/ June 1, 2023)

On Thursday, their families gathered alongside other residents of Micobie and other Region Eight communities for a large funeral for the 11 girls.

Most people squeezed into a village benab where white and brown coffins housing the girls were situated; others lingered around the benab, providing whatever support they could.

At the funeral, a few relatives fought back tears and reflected on fond memories with the girls.

“While Delesia was mostly reserved, Ariana was considered the life of any room she entered.

“…These girls had dreams and aspirations. They were determined to study and become somebody significant. Delesia had aspirations to become a nurse and Ariana, a teacher,” Lucia Charles, a relative, said.

Alton Prince, another relative of some of the girls laid to rest, also shared fond memories of them even as he struggled to hold back tears. He expressed hope that the girls were all finally at peace.

President Dr. Irfaan Ali also joined the families in their time of mourning, promising that his government would support them for as long as was needed.

“We hear your cries, your pain, and your sorrows,” Dr. Ali said.

Later adding, “We are going to ensure that these girls and our little boy that their life is marked with a legacy of positive change in these communities.”

He also asked members of the community to provide similar support to the families affected by the great tragedy. In fact, he pleaded with them to “uplift the families” in their time of grief. (Vishani Ragobeer)