Penny Feather scores 100
August 13, 2004
Penny Feather scores 100

He is affectionately known as ‘Penny Feather,’ because of his lightweight, and diminutive size. Whatever his physical attributes, Joseph Badenock accomplished a rare feat last Tuesday. He celebrated his 100th birthday.
His life reflects one of humility. He lives in Reversion in the Central Leeward town of Barrouallie and, with his wife Ruby Lyn, there are nearly two hundred years between them. Ruby Lyn is 96 years old. {{more}}
They dwell in a small one bedroom wooden building, and enjoy the support and solidarity of the entire Barrouallie community.
The family homage is evident and his niece Maude John plays a major role in ensuring that the Badenocks are properly cared for.
They are symbols in the Barrouallie district, respected, not only for their seniority but also for their contribution to the district.
Penny Feather spoke in a strong voice to the Searchlight last Wednesday and recalled his experiences.
He retains much of the Spanish he learnt during trips to Cuba and to Santo Domingo, and they form part of an experience which many will be happy to identify with.
He spoke with a sense of satisfaction of having to borrow his brother’s trousers to make him appear older.
‘When I travel, I was a little boy,” Badenock stated. He referred to his father and older brother William who went to Cuba before him. But it was not smooth sailing in Cuba.
He referred to his working days in SVG. “ I was a fisherman. When I come from the sea, I go and work in the garden,” he stated.
Badenock reflected on his stint on the estate at Peters Hope, referred to then as ‘Spring.’
Life was not easy for Badenock. He rehashed an incident when along with five others he rowed a lighter from Peters Hope to Kingstown one Sunday. Owing to the presence of a storm, it was not until Monday before they landed at Kingstown. And when they returned to Peters Hope, the estate manager paid them 24 cents, for one day’s work.
Badenock owes his life to the mercy of God. A devout Spiritual Baptist, he experienced the hardships the religion underwent in order for them to worship.
In his view, Barrouallie is where Spiritual Baptists obtained their freedom.
He recalled going to the village of Troumaca where Mother Melia Johnson “put the first ban pon me head.”
He spoke of rural constables hiding out in the bushes to catch the Spiritual Baptists worshipping to gather evidence to take them to court.
He rehashed the virtues of the Spiritual Baptists and pointed out: “I was only a follower before I call to the spirit. I answer the call.”
“Any way yo go, remember yo God. Nah kay way yo hear people say,” Badenock advised.
Badenock skirted a number of areas, and with his experience, it was hard to pin him down to a single subject.
His knowledge of life in and around Barrouallie is extensive.
Badenock remembered when a stone rolled down from hills overlooking the town. He recalled that: “it aint touch ah thing. When it reached a flat round ah mango tree, it stop (ped) right there. That is the work of God.”
The Badenocks have one son Theophilus, but the kinship is not as close as it probably should.
However Joseph “Penny Feather” Badenock continues to enjoy the blessings bestowed on him.