Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : July 8th 2016 Contents A5
Friday, July 8, 2016 www.guardian.co.tt Guardian
The smile which characterised
Patrick Manning in life was evi-
dent in his death yesterday, as the
man dubbed "The People s Prime
Minister" lay at the Southern
Academy of the Performing Arts,
Behind his open casket, in the
lobby of the Sundarlal Popo Bahora
Auditorium, and in front of a large
huge floral arrangement adorned
with the balisier, symbol of the Peo-
ple's National Movement (PNM) he
once led, his wife Hazel Manning
stood resolute, comforted by the
fact that he died with a smile on
his face. That, she said, was a sign
he was in a good place.
"He has a smile on his face.
When I ask them (officials at the
funeral home) how come, they say
it is a natural thing. Few people die
with a smile on their face. He has
good place," she told the T&T
She described him as both a
politician and family man and said
she had no regrets sharing him with
Trinidad and Tobago, first as the
Member of Parliament for San Fer-
nando East and later as prime min-
One of her son's, David, and her
in-laws stood by her side. Her other
son, Brian, is abroad pursuing his
second masters degree and had a
written examination yesterday.
She later said even as her hus-
band lay on his hospital bed, he
encouraged Brian to stay and finish
his examination. Brian is expected
to deliver the eulogy at the funeral
service at the Trinity Cathedral,
She confirmed that following the
service there would be a private
ceremony at Belgrove's Funeral
She acknowledged that con-
stituents and other southerners were
hurt by the family's decision to
church and bury the body out of
San Fernando but explained it had
to do with the capacity of the St
Paul's Anglican Church, Harris
Promenade, where he was baptised
and got married, to accommodate
the hundreds from here and abroad
who were to attend the funeral.
"It does not have the capacity. It
does not have extensions. Trinity
Cathedral in Port-of-Spain could
extend into the car park and into
Woodford Square and that is what
they are doing because so many
people have requested to come.
"This is why we are doing what
we are doing today (Thursday). Hav-
ing an open casket and encouraging
them to come, driving through the
constituency when this is done,"
Manning is the fourth PM to have
died since T&T took charge of its
own political destiny in 1956 and
the only one whose face citizens
were able to see in death as he lay
in an open casket.
On day one yesterday, the body
was transported on a gun carriage
driven by the T&T Regiment
through the streets of San Fernando
to the tune of "I Did It My Way."
It was put on display at SAPA from
10 am to 6 pm, then taken through
the constituency and back to Bel-
grove's Funeral Home for trans-
portation to the National Academy
for the Performing Arts (NAPA) for
day two of public viewing today.
Manning's widow confessed that
it had been a rough few days, as
there have been nightly wakes at
the family home but the death had
not yet sunk in.
"Every night at seven, there is no
planning, people just come with
their instruments, set up and they
keep going. It has not sunk in
because I am so busy working with
the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to
organise the final send-off," she said.
"If it is looking good and feeling
good, it is because of the work that
has been going on. I love the sup-
port," she added.
She also extended her heartfelt
gratitude to the doctors and nurses
at the San Fernando General Hos-
pital, whom she said went above
and beyond the call of duty to ensure
Manning was well taken care of.
She also thanked President
Anthony Carmona, who paid his
respects to Manning and gave words
of comfort to the family before the
body was opened up for public
She especially thanked the public
who came out in their thousands
to bid final farewell to Manning.
"I did not expect to see what I
saw this morning. It is beyond my
wildest dreams. The lines are long.
They have run out of condolence
books to sign. They have ordered
more books. Nobody expected this,"
In a scene reminiscent of an
election day, thousands lined up
outside the centre Manning con-
ceptualised and had built, waiting
their turn to file past his casket
and sign the condolence book, even
as the T&T's National Steel Sym-
phony Orchestra, another one of
his initiatives, maintained the som-
bre mood by playing a repertoire
of Manning's favourite selections,
including God Bless our Nation,
Sohanee Rath and Memories.
The Holy Trinity Cathedral, Port-
of-Spain, will be the last resting place
for former prime minister Patrick Man-
ning, as there are now plans to entomb
his body there following his funeral
Speaking at yesterday's post-Cabinet
media briefing, Minister in the Office of
the Prime Minister, Stuart Young, said
Manning's bereaved wife, Hazel, had
made the request. He said, however, that
there were ongoing discussions with the
Anglican Diocese on the matter.
But the T&T Guardian was told by a
Government source that the church had
agreed to the request but would not be
able to prepare in time to accommodated
it following tomorrow's funeral. As such,
Manning's body will be kept at the Bel-
grove's Funeral Home in Tacarigua after
his funeral and prepared for entombing
at a later date.
Young also refused to divulge the for-
eign dignitaries carded to attend the
funeral, adding only that invitations were
sent out and they were awaiting final
confirmation from attendees. He noted
that the cathedral's normal capacity of
920 to 950 people will be cut down for
the accommodation of invited guests
while there will be large tents set up out-
side the church to cover 1,000 more
Asked how the Government would
honour Manning, Young said that Cab-
inet was yet to decide.
Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley and
Parliamentary presiding officers will
be the first to view the body of late for-
mer prime minister Patrick Manning
at the National Academy for the Per-
forming Arts (NAPA) at 10 am today.
Minister Stuart Young (Prime Min-
ister's Office) confirmed this yesterday
as the viewing of Manning's body in
South Trinidad wound to a close.
Manning's body is scheduled to depart
South this morning, en route to Port-
of-Spain to be prepared for today's view-
ing at NAPA. Th viewing at NAPA begins
Young said apart from Rowley, the
House Speaker, Senate President, PNM
MPs and Senators will also view the
body as will members of the public.
Communication Minister Maxie Cuffie
also yesterday detailed media arrange-
ments for coverage of tomorrow's three-
hour state funeral for Manning at Holy
Trinity Cathedral, Port-of-Spain.
The service will be from 10 am to 1
pm and tributes will be paid by several
people, including Carmona, Rowley, St
Vincent Prime Minister Dr Ralph Gon-
salves and others. The eulogy will be
given by Manning's elder son Brian.
The body will be taken to the church
via slow processions from the Lighthouse
at South Quay, up Frederick Street and
into Abercromby Street. The cortege will
be taken into the church from the south-
ern end of the cathedral on Abercromby
Street. The cathedral's bells will toll 59
times on entry of the body to the church.
State-owned CNMG will carry the serv-
ice live without commentary, interviews
The funeral will be followed by a repast
for guests at City Hall.
Tents have been set up at Woodford
Square, opposite the church, to accom-
modate additional guests.
Police also detailed traffic restrictions
for the period between today and tomor-
row's service. The block around the
church and Woodford Square will be
Meanwhile, Government has created
a dedicated Facebook page and Twitter
handle for people wishing to express
their condolences to the Manning family.
Well-wishers can offer their condolences
through the following official social media
accounts: Facebook: https://www.face-
Manning/ or Twitter handle: @condo-
The social media platforms were avail-
able from yesterday and will continue
until midnight Sunday and the messages
will be compiled and presented to the
Hailed as people's PM...
Patos dies with
smile on face
Grieving San Fernando East constituents throw flowers on the hearse bearing the body of their former MP
and prime minister Patrick Manning in Pleasantville yesterday evening as it made its journey through the
constituency for the last time. PHOTO: RISHI RAGOONATH
Body to be entombed at Trinity Cathedral
PM views Manning first today
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