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Afzal Khan, 55, dies

By Anna-Lisa Paul Monday, January 9 2012

click on pic to zoom in
Afzal Khan...
Afzal Khan...

A media practitioner with more than 30 years experience and recently appointed corporate communications manager of the Tourism Development Company, Afzal Khan has died.

Khan, who turned 55 on December 25, 2010, died at the Surgi Med Clinic in San Fernando at about 9.20 am yesterday. His funeral is expected to take place this morning according to Muslim rites.

While it not known exactly what the father of two died from, sources close to the family believe he may have died as a result of a heart attack. Speaking with Newsday at the Khan family home at Grant Street, Balmain, Couva yesterday, Khan’s wife of 21 years, Mala said she remained shocked over her husband’s sudden demise.

Remembering her partner of 28 years as a “giving person,” Mala said her husband was best known and loved for “his generosity and big heart.”

Mala explained the family had just returned from the United States, where Khan had shopped for toys for the three children of Chrystal Ramsoomair, the 29-year-old woman who died at the San Fernando General Hospital on March 4, 2010 after delivering her third baby via C-section. Mala said Khan suddenly decided the family should go to New York for Christmas to spend time with family members, particularly his great-niece’s daughter, Sydney Logan whom he fondly referred to as his grand-daughter. Mala said it was while abroad that Khan “began feeling a little sick,” but they believed it was because of the cold temperatures that he was unwell.

Returning home to Trinidad last Tuesday, Mala said her husband went to work on Thursday and Friday, and on Saturday morning, he suggested to her that “they go walking.” Begging him to see a doctor before exercising, Mala said it was while at the doctor’s, Khan began feeling “a little dizzy,” and went to the Surgi Med Clinic where he was examined and they were informed he had suffered a “slight stroke and should be hospitalised for observation.”

It was shortly after 9 am yesterday that the family was contacted and told that Khan had passed away. Revealing she and Khan had discussed his last rites long before his death, Mala said he had insisted on having Indian songs from the 50s and 60s being played as the hearse bearing his body left the house and for everyone “to celebrate when I die.”

Among other postings, Khan served as Head of News and Current Affairs at TTT and at HCU Communications, in addition to having lectured at the Cipriani Labour College and the University of the West Indies.

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