Across four pages of photos in captivating splendour honouring local heroes and celebrating Cayman’s maritime history, Caymanian Times joins with the entire Caymanian community at home and abroad in this moment of tribute.
It’s important to stop and reflect on how we got here on the historical and developmental trajectory of these islands, not just economically but also socially.
As a community, it is vital that we honour, recognise and respect those who've played their part; both in getting us here and those who have picked up the mantle in its various forms and continue to be beacons for this society.
Charting the path of Cayman’s continuing evolution from its seafaring heritage to our modern-day mini-mecca, recording and preserving it, is not just for us to reflect on but is an inspiration for present and future generations.
Such is the tremendous significance of the announcement by Hon. Premier Alden McLaughlin of the renaming of Harbour Drive to be known as Seafarers’ Way along with the proposed national park honouring our seafarers.
Cayman’s proud maritime tradition continues to make its presence felt globally today, although not to the extent that it did in the past.
The formal recognition of currently active Cayman Islands seafarers delivered during the Heroes Day ceremony by Hon. Leader of the Opposition, Arden McLean, JP, MP, himself a former seafarer was particularly noteworthy.
He lauded two Caymanians, both from the Brac; Capt. Anderson Radley Scott, who works in Freeport, Texas as one among only 400 Mooring Masters in the world; and Mr Gentry Lee Tatum, an Articulated Tug Barges specialist based in New York.
The recognition given to Cayman's Early Pioneers, Pioneers, Excelled at Sea, Women in Seafaring, Memorial Scroll and Friends of Seafarers was especially heart-warming.
The moment of respectful silence by the Seafarers’ Association to commemorate Cayman’s past heroes, veterans and seafarers lost at sea was very touching and respectful.
We also note the special commendation for the newest National Hero, the late Ms Leila Ross-Shier, composer of Beloved Isles Cayman – The National Song of the Cayman Islands.
"O land of soft, fresh breezes,
Of verdant trees so fair
With the Creator's glory reflected ev'rywhere.
O sea of palest em'rald,
Merging to darkest blue,
When 'ere my thoughts fly Godward,
I always think of you."
National Heroes Day is that reassuring beacon that the history and destiny of these islands are in all our hands.
It’s an occasion we embrace, the flag we wave, the song we sing and the bond we share.
Relive this year’s celebrations captured here in vivid photography courtesy the Cayman Islands Government Information Service/Lucy Russell, GIS.
Let this 8-page keepsake be a reminder of what Cayman can do and let it serve as an inspiration to pull us through.