Front Page
November 18, 2005

They say some events cast their shadows before they occur. That must have been the case with Lewis Nanton, a fisherman for the past six years.

He is breathing a sigh of relief. And he owes his life to a dream he had last Monday morning. Nanton was with nine colleagues from the South Leeward district of Lower Questelles on the Northern Grenadine Island of Bequia. {{more}}

The group had left mainland St. Vincent the previous Tuesday on a fishing expedition to Bequia. It is routine for them to cast their nets where they believe the yield would be most worthwhile.

They pitch their tents at locations they consider suitable after their work on the sea is over.

Last Monday was a fateful day for two of the crew. When a pile of rubble was cleared late on Tuesday, the battered remains of Randolph Matthews, 27, and Alwyn Williams, 28, were removed from scene.

Their end came in sudden and tragic circumstances.

But Lewis Nanton is considering himself fortunate to have had that dream that morning.

“I was really dreaming that I was on a mountain and I see the hills dividing,” Nanton recalled. “After I traveling going back, I hear ‘bop’ in my sleep. When I jump up, I hear a guy say, “Bull Head boy, you know a stone come down behind me,” Nanton went on.

The series of events must have injected a sense of alertness into Nanton and thereafter, he found it difficult to go back to sleep. He mentioned drawing a match which went out, and he was in the process of getting a piece of cardboard to light when according to him, “I hear the report coming from the mountain.”

That was indeed a sign that the clump of rocks and soil was giving way owing to the over- saturation caused by continuous showers.

Nanton spoke of the crew’s efforts to save Alwyn ‘Rocklow’ Williams.

Williams was buried beneath the rubble. Part of his body could be reached by the colleagues and they made frantic efforts to pull him out.

“We tried we best,” Nanton disclosed.

“Rocklow was bawling. He bawl, bawl till he just close off,” Nanton described.

But there was no sign of Rondolph Matthews. Nanton and (Rondolph) Matthews were in the same tent and Nanton disclosed that Rondolph was asleep in the tent at the time of the landslide, adding: “Rondolph ain’t know nothing.”

“If I didn’t have that dream, I did dead,” Nanton outlined.

“I stay awake. That dream that have me alive. I would have been sleeping,” Nanton admitted.

Godwin Williams was also a member of the fishing crew which had to endure the early Monday morning woes. He is Alwyn’s older brother.

He recalled a small landslide which did the initial damage. It was one stone at first, then according to Godwin: “Yo just hear the place wash away.”

Godwin recalled them trying to free Alwyn from the rubble.

“We feel his bottom and his foot. After we dey dey, the whole place cover down. We had to run,” Godwin stated. That was about five o’clock the morning.

Efforts continued to try to rescue the men. “We try dig, we couldn’t get him out,” Godwin said.

It was then the men determined that there was nothing they could do. They then contacted the Police but the pile was too huge for anyone to reach the men in a short space of time. It was not until Tuesday afternoon that the operation was complete. By then, destiny had been fulfilled.

“Me feel bad for both of dem, but way (what) we go (will) do?” Godwin queried.

In spite of the mishap, the survivors are grateful to a number of persons in Bequia. Bequia residents up to Wednesday were caring for their boats. The weather pattern was unsuitable for regular marine activity, and with the trauma and drama of Monday’s events fresh on their minds, the men opted for the safety of a larger vessel to take back to the mainland.

Godwin singled out ‘Bert’ for praise for his help in their hour of need.

“The man really help we,” Godwin admitted.

Nanton congratulated “Bequia people.” He heaped showers of praise on Mr. Boysie.

“He and his family accommodated us for the night. He cooked for us, gave us breakfast in the morning, and lunch. We must thank him very much,” Nanton mentioned.

Others in the crew were Dave Matthews, Calvert and Gregory Lewis, and two others known as Alvin and Meng.