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Man dies after fall from tree

By STACY MOORE Saturday, January 5 2008

click on pic to zoom in
FINAL RITES: Pastor Suresh Harripersad officiates at the funeral service yesterday for his neighbour Reginald Best who died on Wednesday following a f...
FINAL RITES: Pastor Suresh Harripersad officiates at the funeral service yesterday for his neighbour Reginald Best who died on Wednesday following a f...

REGINALD BEST, 46, who died after falling 65 feet from a coconut tree on Wednesday, was given a final farewell by family and friends at a funeral service yesterday. Officiating at the service was Pastor Suresh Harripersad, who lent Best a ladder to climb the tree.

Grieving relatives said it was customary for Best to borrow pastor Harripersad’s ladder to get coconuts in the Debe Trace, Debe area where he lived.

Speaking at the service yesterday, Harripersad said although he is still coming to terms with what happened, he described Best as a good man who was always willing to help anyone in need.

He told mourners to be strong, adding, “Life is like a vapor that appears for a little while and then disappears.” He also explained that Best would always make an effort to attend services and crusades.

“He would always ask me ‘pastor anything you want me to help you with?’ His death is a big loss,” Harripersad, stated adding that he had known Best all of his life since they lived not too far apart.

“Anytime he was ready to pick his coconuts, he would come by me to borrow my ladder,” Harripersad said. “That day, he came to borrow the ladder and without hesitation, as usual, I gave it to him. I did not expect to hear the tragedy ten minutes later.”

Best’s neighbour Ratiram Gayaypersad, who spoke to Best before he died, said: “I wish I could have been there to catch him.”

Gayaypersad said he was watching Best on the tree while he was picking the coconuts and

left telling Best he would return in a few minutes. “All I heard was him screaming my name ‘Ram’ and then there was this loud thud. I ran from where I was and saw Best lying flat on the floor with all the coconuts.”

“As he lay on the ground, Best tried to speak to me but I could not hear his whispers. After a while he grew still and I screamed for help.” The father of two was placed in an EHS ambulance and taken to San Fernando General Hospital where he was pronounced dead-on-arrival. An autopsy revealed that Best died from punctured lungs and spinal injuries caused by the fall.

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