This section of our website is intended for you to literally keep in touch with all of your fellow colleagues who have served in the Bermuda Police. Until now we have put all entries on one post (see Latest News From Home and Abroad 2012), but we are starting a new one for the year 2013.
Trevor Menzies, Jimmy Robertson and Tom Christie get together in Edinburgh for a reunion after 47 years as we hear in this account from Trevor.
This day (12th November 2013) has been a long time coming!. Developing from a simple event where a lady decided that she wanted to know what had happened to her one time ‘pen pal’ who she had not seen or heard from since 1963!.
Her enquiries ended up in the ex-Bermuda Police web site and resulted in today! (CLICK HERE for Trevor’s article in our “Then and Now” column)
On this day, three ex-Bermuda Police Constables - Jimmy Robertson, Thomas Christie and Trevor Menzies were re-united in friendship after 47 years when they met in Edinburgh this morning.
This momentous event started at Tom's at 10am. Great hugs and a few old men’s tears were followed by intense reminiscences over coffee until, with our bus passes clenched in freezing hands’, we headed off to lunch at a ‘Witherspoons’ in Edinburgh.
Finding a quiet corner, a good steak washed down by the usual nectar was accompanied by many great stories about our experiences and pals in the sixties. We remembered, with sadness, several good friends who were no longer with us before including them in previously mentioned stories that had us rocking on our stools much to the amusement of nearby diners.
There followed a walkabout in Edinburgh ending up at a 'posh' loo before returning to Tom's to continue bringing the distant past up to date.
Today was a great day in the lives of three old friends from the distant past!. Hopefully, it will be the first of many. We are planning a few days together at my pad in Moffat in the New Year and this invitation is an open one!.
Editors note - We are hoping to receive more information about Jimmy and Tom as to what they did after leaving Bermuda in the 1960's.
Arthur Rose - We just heard from George and Carol Hammond who visited our old friend and colleaguye Arthur Rose during a recent trip to the U.K.
George Hammond with Arthur Rose and his sister Jean
Steve Rollison returns - Steve Rollison and his wife Kerry paid a visit to the PRC this afternoon during their first vacation in Bermuda since 2009. Steve served in the Force from 1978-1988 in Western Division and later in Motor Cycle Squad with Inspector Eddie “Boxhead” Foggo, Russ Paynter, Dennis Brookes, Ray Bell and others. He tells a great story about how he was selected by “Boxhead” to work in MCPS and has promised to tell us all about it when he writes an article in our “Then and Now” column!
Steve met his wife Kerry while she was working as a nanny for the Steinhoff family and they have lots of happy memories of their time here. They have four children – one daughter and three sons - and have settled in Oliver, near Kelowna in BC, Canada, where Steve is a Canada Customs Officer and Kerry works in a Maternity Department.
They are staying with Norman and Helen Wilson, and had timed their visit after hearing that Bermie Expo might organize a reunion here in Bermuda in October this year. Our plans fell through but their visit happened to coincide with Police Week 2013 so Steve and Kerry were able to attend the annual BBQ put on by the Bermuda Police Service for retired and former police officers.
Steve may have left Bermuda 25 years ago but still avidly reads the Royal Gazette almost daily and tries to stay up-to-date with our local news. He was delighted to meet up with COP Michael DeSilva at the BBQ and let the Commissioner know that he is doing a great job at one of the most difficult times for the BPS.
Steve Rollison gets to meet Commissioner of Police Michael DeSilva
Davie Kerr’s Round the World Trip - As some of you may be aware, Davie Kerr set off from Scotland in July this year on what he claims might be his last round-the-world trip - due to the fact that he has a new ladyfriend in his life of whom we should hear more when our Flying Scotsman arrives in Bermuda.
We reported that in August he spent 4 days in Singapore where he had lunch with Kevin Fisher, then it was off to Australia to meet up with his oldest son, followed by get togethers with Dick Coulthard in Adelaide, Les “Sid” Gordon in Sydney, and a rendezvous with Dave Inwood, Graham “Pinky” Marshall and lunch with Don “Loquat” Urquart.
Then it was off to New Zealand and Hawaii, and we heard that he was recently on Canadian soil where he met up with Pat McBride who was said by Davie to be hibernating in the wilds of Abbotsford BC. Pat sends his regard to all his old mates.
Our latest report had Davie spotted in Toronto where he met up with Ian Kittle for a night of consuming steak and swapping tales about the good old days in Bermuda (the two had not met for 35 years). Ian tells us that he's now retired and he has promised to write and let us know more about what he's doing these days.
Davie Kerr and Ian Kittle get together in Toronto
Rumours abound that Davie is now either on the way here, or he’s arrived under cover of darkness, but will definitely be staying around for the annual World Rugby Classic. We’ll try to pin him down for long enough to give us a full report on his travels and travails!
Bob Porter - Would you believe it, we have yet another ex-Bermuda bobby paying us a visit this week and staying for a month. Bob Porter will be flying in on Tuesday 27th and plans to visit the Police Club on Thursday afternoons during his visit (housesitting). he will be on the same flight as Phil Hammond. So anyone who knew either Bob or Phil might want to mosey up to the PRC on Thursday to catch up with old colleagues. In the meantime we've just received this photo of a group attending a wedding reception circa 1972-1973 which includes one of our August visitors. Does anyone have idea who is in the photograph and who was getting married that day? If so please write your answer in our comments column below, or email us at info.expobermuda.com
Danny Brogan - This must be the best time of the year to visit Bermuda because our latest visitor will be Danny Brogan who served in the Bermuda Police from 1971 - 1973 in Central and then as Government House chauffer. Danny is visiting Bermuda very briefly next weekend, arriving by cruise ship on Sunday 2nd September and staying until Tuesday. He is very keen to meet as many of his former colleagues as possible but won’t be here for the usual Thursday afternoon session up at the Police Club. Instead he has advised that he will be at Flanagan’s from 12noon – 1pm and hopes to meet up with old mates such as Ray Bell and John Dale and others who he served with. If anyone wants to contact him directly we have his email address.
Philip Hammond - We just heard from Phil Hammond who served from 1975 to 1981, mostly in Admin during the days of JCP Hanlon and George Garrod. Phil will be visiting Bermuda next week, arriving on 27th August, and will visit the Police Club at 5pm on Thursday 29th August to catch up with former colleagues. Phil trained with, amongst others, Eddie Davies, Brian Robinson, Phil Taylor and Stuart Kirkpatrick.
Young PC Philip Hammond
Ian Graham - Our most recent visitor from the UK to the Police Club and Bermuda was Ian Graham with his lovely wife, Maggie, on the final stage of a vacation in which they also visited Vancouver and Alaska. Ian and Maggie are now back at home and Ian sent us this brief account of their holiday.
Ian and Maggie with old friends at the PRC
“We arrived back home just over a week ago having had a wonderful holiday. Firstly I must say that we were very lucky with the weather in Vancouver and Alaska, the locals kept telling us that they get a lot of rain and mist in these parts (10 feet a year in Alaska) but for the whole time we had blue sunny skies and temps in the high 70’s.
The direct flight from Glasgow to Vancouver on Airtransat went well and getting from the airport to downtown Vancouver was very straight forward on the Skytrain. The Pan Pacific Hotel was right at the cruise terminal and when it was time to depart our luggage was taken from our room straight to our cabin on the ship. We got an upgrade at the hotel to a deluxe harbour view room which was nice. The harbour is busy with seaplanes or float planes as they call them there. We enjoyed our two days in Vancouver and did the open top bus tour.
The Amsterdam is an older ship but we enjoyed it. We had a nice stateroom with a large balcony which proved a bonus with the excellent weather. The scenery along the coast of BC and Alaska was wonderful and could show Scotland a thing or two.
We had three stops in Alaska and we took a shore excursion in each of them. In Scagway we took the train up the Whitepass crossing back into Canada as we headed towards the Klondike/Yukon goldfields though did not go quite that far. it was an interesting journey seeing where these hardy gold prospectors walked up the mountains into Canada in the gold rush of 1892. The RCMP would stop them at the border and not let them continue to the goldfields unless they had a years supply of food.
There was lots of stories including a gunfight in Scagway where the local villain Soapy Smith was shot through the heart by local hero Frank Reid but not before Soapy fired off a round and hit Frank in his groin. Poor Frank took 12 days to die and lost his golden nuggets.
In Juneau we went whale watching and saw whales and other wild life including Stellar seals and bald eagles swooping down and taking fish from the pacific. 50% of the American bald eagle population live in Alaska. In Ketchikan we took a seaplane ride to watch black bears. It was the salmon season and the bears caught the salmon as they were heading up river to spawn.
Passing the Tracey Arm Glacier
The end of our holiday was our 9 nights in Bermuda which is always special. It was great meeting up with you and the others at the PRC for happy hour. Please thank Dave Cook for sending out the email alerting others that Maggie and I would be there. I am surprised that having been forewarned so many turned up!
All in all a great holiday and we will treasure the memories. I attach some photos, hope they open okay.
Our next break away is our mini reunion at York. I brought a few things back with me such as Black Seal miniatures and a Hog Penny Tee shirt which, along with whatever the Bermuda Tourism Department send me, will go someway to Bermudianising the atmosphere.
In regard to the reunion, Paul Deans, Chris Pearce, Colin Hopkins, Paul Davis, Frank Wood, Bob Kinnon and myself are all planning to be there."
Davie Kerr and Don Urquart -
Don Urquart and Davie Kerr have lunch in Sydney, Astralia
After recently receiving this photo from Don Urquart taken when he and our inveterate traveler, Davie Kerr, were having lunch in Sydney a few days ago, we managed to track down Davie who claims that he is on what might be his last round-the-world trip (Davie’s style might be slightly cramped as we hear rumours of him having a new lady friend in his life!).
He tells us that he left home on 8th July, on an overnight train to London, took an overnight flight to Bangkok, an overnight train to Butterworth, a bus to Kuala Lumpur, 5 days there with an old hockey friend & his family, a bus to Singapore where hespent 4 days and had lunch with Kevin Fisher; flew to Melbourne for a few weeks with his older son (and caught up with Dick Coulthard in Adelaide), and is now staying with Les "Sid" Gordon in Sydney. Had lunch a few days ago with him, Dave Inwood, and Graham "Pinky" Marshall, and lunch with Don “Loquat” today. He is going on to New Zealand on Tuesday 20th, Hawaii on 5th September for a veterans' hockey festival, Canada 22/23 September, then down to Bermuda around 3rd October for his annual visit when he takes in the annual World Rugby Classic.
Great to hear from Davie, and if you live just about anywhere in the world don’t be surprised if he drops in on you!
Editors note - Apologies for not keeping this column up-to-date for the past 2 months. This has been a very busy time on the home front, but will make every effort to report on what's happening with our colleagues moving forward. Please feel free to let us have your latest news and we will do our best to publish it as soon as possible.
Patricia Ann “Aine” Sheehan - We just had a visit from Aine Sheehan, the daughter of Inspector Sean Sheehan who returned to Bermuda for the first time since she and her family moved back to Ireland in 1978, where they settled in her mum’s home town of Emyvale, County Monachan.
Anyone who served in the Bermuda Police during the late 1950’s through to the late 1970’s will remember Sean who was a legendary character, especially during his days in charge of Cycle Squad where he had a reputation as a fearless motor cyclist and a great interviewer who was always persistent but compassionate.
Inspector Sean Sheehan
Sean had joined the Bermuda Police in 1957, and married his lovely wife, Patricia, a hairdresser at the time, in 1958. Their first daughter, Cliona was born in 1960, and Aine was born in 1965. The family lived on Alexandria Road in the Police housing, and the girls both attended MSA.
Aine continues to have very fond memories of life in Bermuda even though she left at the age of nine, and was promptly accused by her fellow classmates in her new primary school in Ireland of having a “fake tan”!
After finishing school Aine worked for a while at the BBC, and then entered the Civil Service for the next 23 years during which, at one time, she worked as the Visits Coordinator for the Deputy Prime Minister, John Prescott. In 2008 she took a career break to be with her mum after the sad passing of her father, Sean, who had settled well back in Ireland, working for several years on the Census and then spent time helping a cousin in his factory producing sports bags. It should come as no surprise that Sean was an excellent salesman, especially bearing in mind his amazing ability to “sell” jail time or senior training school time to young men who had been stealing bikes in Bermuda!
While here on Island with her cousin Clana Ford who lives in Jamaica, Aine looked up old friends, including Theresa (Pratt) Pedro who took her out for a tour of the Island, as did Dave and Patsy Cook. Patsy’s mother, Marian had worked with Aina’s mum as a hairdresser at Betty’s. Aine also spent time with Dave and Sue Garland who used to be their next door neighbours at Prospect, and also Michelle (Cassin) Neal, daughter of Tom and Joanna Cassin, and Bill Bryan.
Aine (centre) with Patsy and Dave Cook on their balcony with a magnificent view of the Great Sound
Asked about her visit, Aine said that although Prospect had completely changed, as has Dockyard, she still found everyone to be really friendly, generous and kind. She was particularly impressed by public transport after purchasing a bus and ferry pass for sightseeing. One place she found to be still a beautiful spot was Admiralty House Cove which brought back many happy memories of the times when it was used by the Police.
Aine’s sister Cliona has four children back in Ireland and is now divorced. She works in Community Development for the National Parents Council of Ireland. Cliona had always shown artistic ability, and she recently held her first exhibition of her work at ‘Arts Week’ in Clifton, Country Galway.
Both Cliona and Aine have promised faithfully to put together an article on their dad for our Hall of Fame, and will provide us with photos from their photo albums.
The Sheehy Clan! Our Who, When and Where photo of a 5 year old pin-up girl on the beach (CLICK HERE for the photo and article) published in May certainly resulted in a quick and very positive response from members of the Sheehy Clan, that is, the children of the Late D/Supt John Joe Sheehy and his wife Joan who are sadly no longer with us.
The first person to spot the identity of our young model was Kate Sheehy, and with good reason - it was her sister Maureen. We have also heard from their brother Mike who is now back in Bermuda with the sort of position that most Irishmen can only dream of!!!
We asked the siblings to let us know briefly where they are and what they are doing these days.
Kate wrote to say that after graduating from MSA, she was thankfully and strongly encouraged by both MSA and her parents to pursue a formal education. She got her degree in Psychology and Education. Kate says, “I had the amazing experience to teach Primary school at Gilbert Institute under the guidance of Mr. Alwyn McKittrick, I also had the true privilege of teaching alongside my absolute favorite MSA teacher, Carole Figueiredo who took over the position of Principal at Gilbert Institute.
I left Bermuda to pursue a Master’s degree in Guidance Counseling but was side tracked to Texas where my parents had retired to Houston. I fell “in love” and gave up the Masters degree and now have 3 amazing sons. John, Matthew and Michael. (The absolute loves of my life.)
Kate with her boys, John, Matthew and Michael
Sad to say, both our parents, Joan, and John passed away way to soon. Our hearts were broken and life as we knew it changed forever. Nonetheless, we know our heritage, and John & Joan Sheehy live on in us and their grandchildren…and great grandchildren.
Growing up as my father’s daughter was an interesting experience. He taught me to love God, work hard, do better, obey the law and believe in Leprechauns. Our mother was a saint.
I now work in the telecommunications world and enjoy my career immensely. I do think I would have made an excellent Police Officer, preferably in CID .
My love and sincere best wishes and thanks to the Bermuda Police who were part of our lives and still are.
Maureen (Sheehy) Brichetto wrote to say that she and her husband John have been married for 12 years. They live in Coppell, Texas, which is a suburb of Dallas. Maureen has lived in Texas since 1981, first in Houston before moving to Dallas in 1987.
Maureen (Sheehy) Brichetto
Maureen says, “I own a small media firm called Brichouse Media (http://brichouse.com). My husband is a financial analyst with the federal government. Our favorite pastime is pretty much just hanging out with our family, golfing, keeping fit and eating good food. We have 7 grandchildren, but 4 of them (Ryan's girls), moved to Mexico, so it's been quiet lately.
I miss Bermuda very much, but all of the family are here in the U.S. so for now this is home. It would be a dream come true to move back to Bermuda though.
Mike Sheehy - Mike tells us that after moving to Texas in 1986 he attended the University of Houston with hopes of returning to Bermuda someday with a Hospitality degree. He enlisted in the United States Marine Corps in 1988 and Served during Desert Storm 1.
Mike says, “I began working at an Outback Steakhouse as a Server and rose through the ranks to Managing Partner of my own store. After 14 years with Outback I decided it was time to return to the Island. I took an opportunity with The Fairmont Southampton Princess and began anew in Bermuda.
During my time at Fairmont I met many of the Security personnel who were former Bermuda Police Officers. They all told me of the high regard they had for my father which was truly touching.
Currently I am a Manager at Bermuda's only Irish Pub and Restaurant, Flanagans Irish Pub on Front Street in Hamilton. Where else would a Sheehy turn up!
Mike Sheehy and girlfriend Brandi Keating
My beautiful Girlfriend is Brandi Keating and of course she's from Canada, Just like my mom Joan..
Bob Stewart - Prior to visiting Scotland a few weeks ago, Bob Stewart contacted us to obtain the address for his old friend, Alastair “Shakey” Johnson. The two had served together in the Bermuda Police in the late 1950’s early 1960’s at a time when both were avid poker players!
Bob managed to get in touch with Alastair and they got together in a pub where they reminisced about the good old days!
Young D.C. Robert "Bob" Stewart
Alastair "Shakey" Johnson
Bob served in the Bermuda Police from 1959-1964 before leaving to pursue an academic career as a teacher and lecturer. However, he later turned to the business world and rose to become Chief Executive of the Royal Dutch/Shell Group of Companies in Bermuda between 1985 and 1998. He retired on in, 2001 as President of Old Mutual Asset Managers (Bermuda) Limited. A director of several companies in Bermuda, he holds degrees in economics and law from the University of London.
He writes regularly on economic issues and is also the author of a comprehensive book on Bermuda’s economy, “An Economy Which Works” published in 1997.
We just posted a link in our Press Release column to a recent guest article Bob wrote in the Bermuda Sun (CLICK HERE for the Press Release).
Bob also has his own website with the title “Robert Stewart, Some views and opinions on life” which makes for interesting reading. CLICK HERE for a link to his website.
Larry Fox - Beware of rumours as they travel. If news gets around in St. George’s that you've caught a cold, by the time the news reaches Somerset you’re on the way out with pneumonia!
Bearing that it mind we just heard directly from Larry Fox that 3 weeks ago he went to King Edward Hospital for a colonoscopy where it was discovered that he had a cancerous polyp. Although it was removed at the time he subsequently returned to the hospital to have a section of bowel removed as a precautionary measure.
Larry at one of our bbq's
Larry is fine and is now enquiring about whether we are issuing any “Prospect Cancer Club Badges”!!!
Mike Cherry - We recently heard from Mike Cherry who many of you will remember writing articles for the Police magazines for many years. Mike had been reading about the passing of Tom Gallagher a few months ago, and he recalled Tom playing for the Police Second XV rugby team, which Mike used to captain, when Tommy first arrived in Bermuda. As Mike says, “Needless to say he did not last long in the second XV before becoming a regular fixture in the first XV.” Mike also recalled serving for a period of time in Traffic along with Bill Pratt, driving the old Sunbeam Talbots before the Police took delivery of those super charged Riley 1.5 saloons. Mike says, “Bill and I spent many happy shifts especially chasing errant Royal Navy sailors in stolen vehicles of various sizes.”
Mike joined the Force in July 1959 after serving in the Leicester City Police in the UK, and after a short time in Central Division was transferred to Traffic from where he was promoted and transferred to Western Division from where he resigned in 1968 to go into the airline industry and eventually the Travel Agency business in Hamilton. Believe it or not, Mike is still there but doing reduced hours so as to spend more time with his lovely wife of 50 years, his two grown children and six grandchildren.
Robert “Bob” Porter - Bob & Anne Porter arrived on the Island on Friday 12th April, for their first real visit since they left Bermuda in April 1981. They were asked to house sit for an old friend which was hard to resist, this being their 2nd holiday together in 6 years!
While here Bob visited the Police Recreation Club on Thursday afternoon (18th April) and thoroughly enjoyed meeting up with some of his former colleagues including Charlie Mooney, Pete Shaw, Steve Taylor, Norman Wilson, Roger Sherratt, Ron & Charlotte Beech & Phil Taylor (see photo). For our more observant readers you may notice that the photo was actually taken in the Senior Officers Mess due to the fact that the PRC was packed and noisy so the group adjourned to a quieter setting to reminisce! Bob later had a long chat with John and Mary Van de Weg over the phone. (see separate article about John).
Bob says,“I was thrilled to have the chance to revisit the Island and meet up with old friends and colleagues. I’d like to send my best regards to everyone I served with during my time in Bermuda from October 1970 to April 1981.” He is delighted to have been invited to house-sit for two more families later in the year and hopes to do so and to return to the PRC for another sampling of Bermuda’s great hospitality (but maybe not quite so many G&T’s).
Bob and Anne also had the opportunity to visit old friends, the Hansons (for whom they did a house-sit), the Tufts, Grant & Flo' Hall, and Philip & Bobby Pedro. Their 2nd daughter Amy, who now lives in New York City, will make her first visit to the Island on Friday 19th April before the family return to NYC on Sunday afternoon. She is looking forward to meeting up with old childhood friends and neighbours, Lisa & Keira , daughters of fellow ex-police officer, Steve Petty.
After leaving Bermuda he and Anne returned to the UK where Bob re-joined his old Force, Hampshire Constabulary as a Training Sergeant. He took early retirement in '95 and moved to The Catskill Mountains in New York State where he managed a 120 acre farm. In 2000 he returned to his home town of Portsmouth where he ran a Community Warden scheme in the City. In 2006 he was chosen to head up a community project teaching excluded 15 & 16 years olds. He taught English, Math, Double Science, Literature and PE for 5 years. Since then he has been fixing up houses for his 3rd & 4th daughters and has been running life skills courses as a volunteer in his community.
Bob has promised to write a more comprehensive bio for our “Then and Now” column after his return to England.
John Van de Weg - As many of our readers will know, John has had more than his share of major health issues and was flown to the U.S. for more surgery in late 2012. On arrival it was discovered that he was in immediate need of heart surgery, and following a lengthy period of rehabilitation he is now back home. We are pleased to report that he is making some slow but steady progress.
John Van de Weg
During a recent visit to John and Mary I found him in good spirits and still as sharp as a tack. He was especially delighted to receive a get well card from Pat McBride who sent a photo of himself and old friend Brian Hanney which was taken at Brian’s 70th Birthday.
Brian Hanney and Pat McBride celebrating Brian's 70th Birthday
10th April 2013
Condolences to "Big Mike" Parris
Rob Porter - On a positive note, we have just heard that Rob Porter will be visiting the Island from 12th – 21st April and will be house sitting on Harrington Sound Road. Rob is keen to keep fit while here and is hoping to use the Police gym at Prospect. We have also suggested that he make a point of paying a visit to the PRC around 5.30pm next Thursday 18th April to meet up with old colleagues. We managed to find this photo of Rob, or Bob as he was called, as one of the traning instructors on our first local Outward Bound course held at Paget Island.
Ray Sousa - Ray just contacted us from his home in Australia and brought us up to date with the following email on how he’s doing out there, and also commenting on David Mulhall’s article in the Royal Gazette on 2nd February about the 1965 BELCO Riot.
“As you might have seen on the news, Eastern Australia has been having major bush fires and floods, with not much happening in the West. This is likely to change. I put in a long day Saturday/ Sunday helping manage a local bush fire; and have just sent Officers to assist at a fire outside the district. Besides helping as a volunteer for Emergency Services, I am also doing volunteer welfare work. I have also just been offered 3 months work starting in April; but I will have to balance the benefits against any of my pension benefits I might lose. Healthwise, despite a few aches and pains, I am pretty fit for an old man! Likewise, Pat has a few health issues which come and go.
It must be a sign of old age, but I occasionally get flash backs about some of the major incidents (riots, disarming dangerous criminals, being trapped in fires etc) I have been involved in. It is like reliving the moment, feeling the pain, the smells, your thinking at the time etc. The BELCO riot is one such incident; although not directly involved, it had a major impact on me; possibly as much as the 1968 riots that I was involved in. [I cover this issue in an Emergency Management Course I run].
Ray still volunteers for Emergency Services in Western Australia
Bermuda was a divided community then, probably going back to the days of slavery. As a kid it was almost as if we disagreed with the system, but accepted it. BELCO was a turning point; where black hatred was openly shown. There were a lot of innocent people caught in the middle; the Police representing government, hard working class whites / Portuguese etc. A lot of people including in my own family took sides, no matter what the evidence was. That is why I have so much respect for those black, whites, Police etc who remained open minded, and were prepared to look for the truth.
Yes, I read the comments in the Royal Gazette. Some were excellent. Some were obviously from former Police Officers, some from people whose views might have changed over the years. Then there were comments from people who are still obsessed with RACE. I would like to take these people into a dark room and beat some sense into them!
All countries have done things that are wrong, but they have moved on. Look at the United States which now has an Afro-American President. South Africa has moved on. Up until the Second World War, Australia discouraged anyone who was not English from coming to the country. Now in Western Australia one in three people was born overseas, a lot of these people being from non-English speaking countries. Australians of two or more generations are truly in the minority. A quick look at a phone book, list of government leaders, doctors, etc. will show how many do not have Anglo names.
When we arrived in 1974, the Italians were making their mark; now it is Asians and occasionally Africans. We do not care a stuff what background a person is from when we go to a doctor; or if they are helping during an emergency.
Any person from another country reading the comments on the BELCO Riots can only come to one conclusion. There are some highly intelligent people on the Island surrounded by immature idiots. Unless we are prepared to look at and learn from history, and be prepared to move on, there is no hope for us. David's article gives us a good opportunity to do just that. Some of those comments make Bermuda the laughing stock of the world.
I hope I am not boring you too much, but am proud of my heritage, and proud to have served on the Bermuda Police Force. At the same time I am glad I brought my kids up in Australian, where they have not had to deal with racial issues.
Please keep up the good work.
Bob Allan - We recently heard from Robert “Bob” Allan who served here in the Bermuda Police from December 1970 to 1978. Bob had previously served in the Glasgow Police for 2 years and after arriving here he served in Central Division, on the Mobile Reserve, and on Beach Squad, but most of his time here was in Narcotics, although his record shows that he was posted to Government House but was transferred out after just 2 weeks!
D.C. Bob "Fuzzy Wuz" Allan
Bob has written to say, “On my return to UK in March 1978 I joined Greater Manchester Police and retired in May 2000. I then went into the Plumbing & Heating Trade which I’m still involved in and have my own (very small) business. (I’m winding down a bit now as I’ve reached 65 .)
I married Julie in 1992. We have two children, Kyle 21yrs and Courtney 19yrs. My son is at University and my daughter works for an IT Company in Manchester. My wife is a Midwife and works in the Stockport Area.
I kept in touch with Johnny Williams for a number of years. In June 1995 I visited Bermuda for a few days and was well looked after by Johnny, Kathy and a few others. I later changed my email address and somehow lost his contact details. As you say on the website it was a tragic loss and my thoughts are with Kathy and family.
Feel free to pass my details to any of my former colleagues. I would be pleased to hear from any of them, especially Pat Hamlett.
Finally, if you can’t remember what I look like, scroll to the photograph of ‘Gruff’ Hammond’s retirement. I’m the ‘white afro’ stood between yourself (Roger Sherratt) and Dennis Ramsey.
Kind regards. Bob Allan.
P.S. Can anyone remember the nickname given to me by Mike Parris. If you check with our new Nicknames List (CLICK HERE to find it) you’ll see that Bob was aptly nicknamed “Fuzzy Wuz”. Anyone who knew him then would vividly recall his Scottish Afro! We suspect that this was the nickname given him by Big Mike.
Godfrey Davies - After our article on 13th January about the get together between “Wally” Lumb and “T Derek” Richardson we just heard from Godfrey Davies who discovered in 2010 that he lives no more than 25 miles away from Derek in Indiana. Derek had seen Godfrey being interviewed on a CNN television news programme and called him “out of the blue”! After a brief chat on the phone the two got together for lunch the next day - the first time they had seen each other since they were both serving in the Bermuda Police 29 years ago.
Young P.C. Godfrey Davies
Godfrey, who many will remember as a great #8 on the Police rugby team, has promised faithfully to send us more information for our website. But in the meantime you can see Godfrey being interviewed by the CNN reporter after they featured him in a story about exorbitant medical costs in the U.S. CLICK HERE for the CNN link and hear from Godfrey first-hand how he managed to find a novel way of reducing the cost of a fairly simple surgical procedure (to remove polyps blocking his nasal passages) from over $33,000 down to less than $3,000 plus airfare - by travelling back to his homeland in Wales for the same surgery in a private hospital.
Godfrey proudly shows of his 2012 potato crop
We look forward to hearing more from Godfrey who now lives in Indianapolis.
Gerry Benson - Gerry, who served from 1975 – 1981, has just contacted us from his home in West Yorkshire where he is now retired but keeps busy on his small farm where amongst other activities he breeds Simmental cattle while following the athletic activities of his two children, one of whom is an internationally ranked junior triathlete.
Gerry wrote, “In relation to my own circumstances I served with the Bermuda Police from February, 1975 through to late 1981 when I resigned in order to return to the UK and a position with the West Yorkshire Police: I retired from that force in 2005.
Whilst in Bermuda I served as a uniform patrol officer and from there I moved into the Criminal Investigation Department.
During my time in Bermuda I involved myself, much of the time, with sport representing the service, along with many colleagues, in several disciplines.
There were MANY wonderful and memorable characters, friendships and incidents, both within and outside the service, to recall from my relative short time in Bermuda and I will always reflect fondly on them all; tremendous times and wonderful people - absolutely no negatives.
My retirement revolves around my relatively young children aged 18 years and 14 years; some colleagues may be interested in the fact that Gordon, my son - 18 years, is an international athlete and triathlete and he is currently ranked 5th in the junior world standings as a triathlete; Laura, Gordon's sister, makes attempts to emulate her brother in respect of athletic achievements but I am afraid the closest she will get to the Olympic squad is wearing/using her brother's outfits!
My own interests revolve around breeding a few Simmental cattle and other activities associated with a small farm; including being my daughter's stablehand!”
We should add that during his time in Bermuda Gerry was an outstanding athlete and we're hoping that he'll take the time to write in a little more detail about his sporting endeavours while here in Bermuda.
John "Squid" McQuaid - John has just sent us a link to an article on his blog about Bermuda (CLICK HERE for John's blog) and a recent meeting he had in Leicester with Dr. Ed Harris, who has served as the Executive Director of the Bermuda Maritime Museum since 1980.
John McQuaid with Dr. Edward Harris in Leicester
John has always been fascinated with the history of Bermuda as you will see in his article. John joined the Bermuda Police in 1963 as a direct result of suffering one of the coldest winter's in living memory while pounding the beat in England. Ironically he says he and his wife Lynn are going through another cold winter with rank weather and even more snow and frost in the forecast. It has dropped down to the low 60's here in Bermuda so you have our sympathy John! CLICK HERE to view John's article in our "Interesting Articles"column.
John "Coco" Eve - We just heard from John “Coco” Eve who attended Tom Gallagher’s Funeral in Ireland with fellow ex-Bermuda police officers, Ian “Paddy” Ackroyd, Dave “Woody” Woodcock and David “Dai” Thomas, along with John Price and Bill Nixon who lived for some years on Island.
Sgt John Coco" Eve
John even managed to find time to slip into a bar and have a pint with Dave Woodcock and Dave’s son.
John hails from Leek in Staffordshire and joined the Bermuda Police in 1966 after serving for 4 years in the Staffordshire County Police. He spent time in Central Division (Uniform), Operations (Traffic), and after promotion to Sergeant he worked in Prosecutions, Western & Central, and later as Central Parish Sergeant, before retiring back to his home in Staffordshire.
“Coco” says he’s now fully retired and living in Leek with his partner Kath. He has fond memories of his many friends in Bermuda and send best regards to all. He’s also hoping to visit us in the not too distant future.
Tom Gallagher - We have received more information about Tom's funeral service in Ballylesson on 18th January, and have posted an article about our Honorary Bermuda Police Officer in our "Hall of Fame" CLICK HERE for the article
Michael Leng - We just received this email from Mike Leng in response to our request for nicknames. Mike clearly has an excellent memory and his email indicates that almost everyone in the Force had a nickname. Many thanks to Mike. The names he provided will be added to our list.
Young P.C. Mike "Chubs" Leng
I am responding to your request for nicknames of Bermuda Police Officers.
I joined the force in February,1958 and served until June, 1966. My first posting was to Somerset, where I lived in the police mess on Boaz Island with 7 or 8 other officers. Some of the characters I served with and their nicknames are as follows: Sgts J.J "Bongo " Williams and "Sunny" Roberts. P.Cs Eugene "Buck" Woods, Earl "Spike" Hazel, Herman Ransome "Mike" Cann, John "Jumbo" Allan, Brian "Boo Boo" Millward, Gerry "Dads" Harvey, Harry "Rocky" Leman, Dereck "Earthquake" Wiggins and Graham "Bulkie" Holmes.
I was transfered to Western C.I.D. in 1961. At that time the head of the C.I.D. was Supt. Dick "Grannie" Fielders. Other officers living at Prospect at that time were John "Flaps" Barnett, Bob "Snatch" Stewart, Ron "The Cadaverous One" Shelly, "Corkie" Wilkinson, "Chalkie" White, Nick "Ridiculous Nicholas" Hall, Ted "Fugler the Bugler" Fugler, Eric "Heckie" Laing, George "Ugh" Hammond. Dave Garland was lucky, he had two nicknames.."Mouth and Trousers ...The Yorkshire Yap”. Finally my own nicknames was "Chubs or Chubby. I fancied my chances at dancing the twist...Chubby Checker.
I read the article on Ron Shelly with interest, Ron and I were good friends and played quite a bit of poker together. We also took a 6 week vacation to the States, travelling vast distances on Trailways buses.
I keep in touch with Ray Banks, Tom Oliver, Malcolm Bull, Bob Stewart , Keith Hatfied and John Rawson. Unfortunately, I have lost touch with most of my old mates, would love to hear where they are and what they are doing.
Keep up the good work with the website
Mike Leng. Vernon, B.C.
John and Anne Rawson - We had earlier heard from John and Anne Rawson in Nottingham. Anyone who followed rugby in the early 1960's will remember John who was an outstanding player. He joined the Bermuda Police in 1962 after serving in the Nottingham City Police, and served here for 3 years during which time he met and married his wife Anne, who was a nurse at King Edward Hospital. John served in Central Division, including a spell as CID Aide, and also in Operations.
John and Anne have written to say they had a great time studying the website and spotting lots of familiar faces most of whom they can put a name to. John is planning to write his piece for our "Then and Now" column soon so watch that space.
They were due to meet up with Steve Rollins in a couple of weeks for another trip down memory lane. They had also been thrilled to see Felicity and Dave Lunn.
Bill Pratt - We have just heard news about the death a few days ago of former P.C. Bill Pratt who joined the Force in 1960 and served for 8 years, mainly in Operations, before leaving to work for many years at Oleander Cycles. Bill and his Bermudian wife, Geraldine (Gerry) moved off Island and were believed to be living in California. Our sincere condolences go out to Gerry and family.
Mick "Wally" Lumb and Derek Richardson - We have received this photo of Mick “Wally” Lumb and Derek Richardson who recently met up for the first time in 33 years in Indianapolis.
Mick "Wally" Lumb & Derek Richardson in Indianapolis
Wally has been living in Louisville Kentucky for 8 years, working in Business Development for a Metallurgical Engineering/ Testing Company, mostly in the mid-west and southern states. He moved there after 17 years in upstate New York. He has been single (divorced) since 1989. Wally has had replacement knee surgery, courtesy many years of rugby (what else) but otherwise is hangin' in there. He keeps in touch with Norm Wilson in Bermuda and some ex Police back in UK. And needless to say he still follows Ulster rugby closely from afar and, of course, Ireland! Wally makes occasional visits back to Bermuda and finds it difficult to believe that its 25 years since he served here.
He enjoyed meeting up with Derek and the two of them are rumoured to have a get together with Godfrey Davies in the works.
We’ve also been in touch with “T Derek” who has lived in the USA since leaving Bermuda in 1979. He’s moved around, living in New York, Dallas, Florida, and these past 7 years in Indianapolis.
Young P.C. Derek Richardson
Derek says, “I've worked in the financial services arena mostly - a stint on Wall Street before settling in the Insurance industry, now running a national sales group for one of the largest Healthcare companies. Marriage apparently is not my thing - divorced again (forever!) but have 4 wonderful kids ages 25 down to 11 that are my pride and joy.
Cycling has taken the place of rugby - a new passion that's almost as consuming! This year will be riding 200 miles in Sweden followed by London to Paris in 24 hours - 280 miles of pure joy!
Enjoyed the 50th anniversary of the PRC a few years back, and still love and visit Bermuda biennially. Best to all my old mates - rockbound or otherwise! T'Derek
Tom Gallagher - We were deeply saddened to hear about the death of our old friend Tom Gallagher in Ireland after a long illness. Anyone who served in the Bermuda Police during the 1960’s and 1970’s will recall Tom’s presence on the rugby field and at most Police-related events. Tom could be considered an Honorary Bermuda Police Officer who was extremely popular with all who knew him.
We have sent our sincere condolences to his wife Helen, and we understand this his funeral will be held at 3pm on Friday 18th January. We will post further details as soon as we receive them.
Don Urquhart - Don got in touch with us from his home in Sydney, Australia in response to our article requesting interesting stories about Morris Minors. He recalled an incident during his time as a police officer in Bermuda involving a prolific offender and general nuisance called James Llewellen Allan who once stole or “borrowed” a Morris Minor and drove around the island, ramming cars with it, principally police cars. He wonders if anyone else could recall details of this incident.
Don tells us that he really enjoys our website which gives him much pleasure. He says, “ It’s great to be able to maintain links from so long ago. I am laid up at home for three months recovering from a serious leg injury after a fall in a Sydney shopping centre. Fortunately it was a working day and my medical bills and other costs are met by workers compensation insurance. I am on the mend and getting around with crutches. Hello to everyone in Bermuda.
10th January 2013
Ralph Sealy - Ralph keeps in touch with us from his home in Willow Grove, Montgomery County, near Philadelphia, where he is now fully retired. His last job was driving a yellow school bus for the local municipality in Willow Grove for 13 years (after retiring from his commercial banking career spanning over 30 years Ralph tells us that he and his wife Jennifer do a lot of travelling, local, nationwide and international. Jennifer is also fully retired, having spent 32+years with the Central Bank (Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia) and several years with the same local school district.
Young P.C. Ralph Sealy
Ralph says, “We are both contemplating doing some volunteer work a few hours a week. I dabble a great deal in the U.S. stock market for my own portfolio, trading in stocks, bonds, options, indices, etc. I have a strong background in these areas having worked in the financial areas of the bank during my early career. During Summer, I am an avid gardener, growing vegetables and flowers around the house and in a community garden.
I am also busy with my Anglican Church life, having a successful singing career as a basso profundo for over 55 years in various choirs. I used to sing in the Bermuda Cathedral choir from 1966 to 1968 during the tenure of Bishop Armstrong and Rev. Canon Roderick King. So I'm enjoying my retirement immensely while trying to stay busy.
I would like to wish you and all blokes who served with me a Merry Christmas and a healthy and happy New Year.”