January 22, 2010
Vincentian man dies in road accident


A Vincentian man who had been living in Brooklyn for the past 13 years, died on the spot in the wee hours of Sunday morning after the vehicle he was driving struck a telephone pole.{{more}}

At approximately 3:30 am January 17, 2010, police had to cut open Claudius Durrant’s 2002 Honda Odyssey in order to free his body. Durrant, 32, formerly of Rillan Hill was a mechanic at the time of his death.

“It’s crazy – I’m absolutely shocked. I’ve never seen an accident this bad,” witness Andy Hewitt told New York Daily News.

The New York Daily News said the survivors told investigators they had been at a nearby nightclub in the moments before the crash. Investigators did not expect to file any criminal charges, police said.

While the New York newspaper said that Durrant died at the Brookdale University Hospital minutes after the crash, his brother Dexter Durrant told I Witness-News that he died on the spot.

“By the time the paramedics arrived, he was already dead,” Dexter said, adding that his brother died about two minutes after the accident.

He said his brother lost control of the vehicle after it hit a pothole. The minivan flipped, broke the utility pole, and ran into a fence before sliding back onto the street.

Speaking to SEARCHLIGHT on Wednesday this week, cousin, Maureen “Lady MD” Durrant said that the family is devastated and is still trying to cope with Claudius’ loss. “He was such a loving person who will be missed a lot,” Maureen said.

According to Maureen, Claudius was already making plans to come home in July since he had missed their family reunion in December 2009.

Melessa Durrant also expressed grief over her cousin’s passing. “I was looking forward to seeing him in December at the reunion so we could have a closer bond,” Durrant told SEARCHLIGHT.

Four other men from Durrant’s Rillan Hill community: Kenwrick Durrant, Casmus Francis, Martin Phillips, and Romaldo Jack as well as Claudius’ girlfriend, “Latoya”, were also injured in the accident.

Claudius leaves behind to mourn his mother, Lucille Durrant residing in Brooklyn, three sisters and one brother. (parts adapted from an I Witness-News story by Kenton Chance).