50 years ago: Road accidents and the year’s first Norther

In the Nov. 16, 1966 edition of the Caymanian Weekly, a precursor of the Cayman Compass, Cayman Brac correspondent Lillian Ritch wrote:

“On the 5th there was a collision on the West End Road between an Opel owned and driven by Mr. Otto Foster of the Bight and a Ford car owned by Mr. Lionel Bodden and driven by Mr. Marvin Ryan, both of Watering Place. Mr. Bodden and two other persons were in the car with Mr. Ryan. There were five others beside Mr. Foster in his Opel. No one was injured.

“Between 8:30 and 9 p.m. on the 5th, Mr. Parker Tibbetts was injured when he was thrown from his motorcycle after an impact with a Ford DeLuxe driven by Edlee Martin. The accident took place in front of Edd Hayes & Son Gas Station and Shop.

“Your correspondent’s car was parked facing the shop just having received gas. I was in the shop chatting with Mrs. Hayes when ‘whizz,’ something went past with an outward curve and ‘swish-h-h-h’ followed. Then ‘It’s Parker, is he dead?’ ‘No! He’s alright!’ More calls, then a hoarse ‘I’m alright!’ Now out of the shop we saw a Ford car facing east coming to a standstill on the edge of the road in front of the shop. Capt. K.P. Tibbetts’ Volkswagen was in the yard on the other side of the station. His family were coming out of it.

“In the road about 20 feet behind the Ford and nearer the northern edge, Capt. Keith Tibbetts bent over his son, Parker. Parker, with his body twisted over was trying to prop himself on one arm. His face was dusty, bruised and bleeding particularly over the right eye. The motorcycle lay, having fallen away from him on the North bank of the road. Just off centre of the road between Parker and the car lay a chrome strip bent in an obtuse angle. We learnt after that the cycle mounted the bonnet of the car. The cycle was travelling east to west. The after part of the left rear fender of the car was struck in.

“The District Commissioner coming down just then took Parker to the D.M.O. Constable McLaughlin was called to the scene.

“Miss Orlene Brown left recently for Excelsior High School, Jamaica. She returned to school to study for the G.C.E. Advanced level in Spanish, Latin and English Literature. She was a 1965 graduate of St. Andrew High School, and has been teaching in our Primary Schools for just over a year.

“We welcome Nall Bodden of the West End in to the teaching profession (probationer). He has joined the staff of the Primary School there. He obtained his Third Year Jamaica Local Certificate last year.

“We have our first Norther of the season beginning Tuesday, 1st, lasting into Saturday. On the 3rd, she kept our plane service a-jitter. Going through three advisories, the first schedule being 8 a.m. CBA passed over the airport finally at 12:55 p.m. circled three times and continued back to Grand Cayman. She could not land due to the crosswind – a good 40 miles an hour.

“We said Good Sailing to Melroy Bodden, gone to join the Universe Independence, and to seamen Franklin Bodden, Clyde Banks, Gary Martin, Stanley Scott, Everett Jackson, Burton Dacres, Paul Connolly and Allard Scott who left to join the S.S. Ulysses, of National Bulk Carriers Inc.

“Cayman Brac has enjoyed the visit during the past week of two ladies from Grand Cayman who came for the first time in office – Mrs. Islay Connolly, Acting Director of Education, and Mrs. Joyce Hylton, Probation Officer. Both kept very busy schedules.”

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