Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : August 11th 2014 Contents A14
Guardian www.guardian.co.tt Monday, August 11, 2014
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cive to studies. Car parking facilities are available.
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Miss Kelly-Ann Sampath completed
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In June 2013
At the age of 20 years.
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The country's most
ST KITTS AND NEVIS---"After the surgery, that s
when I lost my sight and I can t walk again."
Shot in the head and chest at the age of 16, Shakeem
"Hotness" Walters lost his sight and is paralysed from
the waist down.
A guest on WINN FM s Voices programme, Sha-
keem, who is now confined to a wheelchair, says he
has bad days, but mostly manages to stay positive.
"It was a bit shocking to see, that when I was going
home...somebody just come and attack me, just so.
It feel real bad...to see I used to help his mom cause
she s in a wheelchair, and to see that she son did
something like this to me. At times I get sad. I cry
a lot. It really hurts, but I get over it now. Couple
friends come in and visit me, and keeping me spirit
His neighbour Linda says his effervescent personality
has not changed much.
"Only thing change about him, is that he cannot
walk. He cannot dress up for you any more like he
used to...that s the only difference with him, but he
still has the high spirit. He still [has] that energy," she
And it was Shakeem s personality that
Annette Frank says jumped out at her from
a picture online, in a story recounting his
ordeal in January 2012, and she was moved
to develop a project to assist him.
A Public Affairs and Administration student
at Rutgers (State University of New Jersey),
Frank a native of St Kitts, was doing a course
in volunteerism when she happened upon
Shakeem s story.
"It was heart wrenching to realise that his
young men was left dying, paralysed, lying
in a pool of blood, and then I thought that
there has to be something that I could do
to help him."
She has created a project called the
Restoration of Shakeem "Hotness" Walters.
It was one of 12 that the university selected
to assist in implementing.
"We re now building a case around his
situation, his medical condition and we are
going to present it to philanthropists in the
US who are willing and able to assist...which
would involve flying him out, having him in
a better environment with people with
stronger expertise in the area."
The public was invited to worship with
Shakeem and his family at the Zion Moravian
Church yesterday morning. The service was
preceded by a Walk of Faith from Shakeem s
house at West Street in Newtown followed
by a picnic for him at Frigate Bay.
Walters, who is openly gay, believes that
his sexuality was the motivation for the attack.
He says he had often been the target of
Nyon Dasent, who was charged with Sha-
keem s attempted murder, pleaded guilty
moments before his trial was scheduled to
begin last May.
St Kitts and Nevis has no hate crime leg-
Shakeem Walters, centre, with Annette Frank, left and family friends Linda and George.
Gay activist shot, blind and paralysed
A symbol of
hope in St Kitts
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