Archive for November 12th, 2008

Creek Dock operational

Creek Dock operational

| 12/11/2008 | 0 Comments

(CNS): The main infrastructure at Creek Dock is undamaged and all equipment is operational, according to Port Authority Director, Paul Hurlston, who was on Cayman Brac Tuesday to assess damage to the island’s port facility. Effective immediately there will be no Port fees applied to goods imported to Cayman Brac for a period of one month, he has announced.

Hurlston travelled to the Brac for the day with Chairman of the Board Wayne Panton, Financial Controller James Parsons, Deputy Director Operations Clement Reid, Fleet Manager Vernick Fredrick, and HR Manager Sandra Barnett.

The aim of the team was to check the physical facility to see what the Port Aurthority needed to do in Grand Cayman and also to understand the needs of the PA staff, said Panton. The Authority may need to provide advances on salaries or or small loans in the immediate term, and also to understand any personal needs such as counselling.

"We understand that this facility is going to be critical in the coming months to the restoration of life and the structure of Cayman Brac. So we want to make sure we have the facility ready to fulfill these objectives," he said. Although the exterior of the warehouse has been damaged by the hurricane, the frame remains intact and repairs are scheduled.

The Authority was sending 15 staff from Grand Cayman Wednesday morning who would spend the day helping the Brac staff, but who would probably leave that night. However, Panton said that they may have a rotation of teams coming into the Brac for a few days at a time in the future to aid in the clean up and restoration of the Creek Dock as well as to assist with the discharge of vessels. However, they need to first find out what accommodation is available so that they don’t strain resources. Some of the Brac staff members don’t even have accommodation right now, he noted.

"We are fortunate that the facility is repairable in the short to medium term," Panton said, adding that plans to restore the storage facility were already being implemented and that afterwards it would be stronger than before.

The first barge left Grand Cayman Tuesday afternoon and arrived around midnight last night. The Authority has requested that shipping companies only bring relief supplies. "We have asked them to prioratise because we don’t have the ability to store significant amounts right now," Panton said.

Minister for Commerce Charles Clifford, who also has ministerial responsibility for the Port Authority, welcomed the news from the Port Authority saying, “This is good news and one more step in the right direction to ensure the recovery of our Sister Islands is swift and effectively meets the needs of our people. I commend the Port Authority for stepping up to the plate and encourage those private sector companies that are in control of fees and charges on the residents of our Sister Islands to follow suit as a way of aiding their recovery from Hurricane Paloma.”

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Bridger to face court again

Bridger to face court again

| 12/11/2008 | 4 Comments

(CNS):  In the wake of his first successful Judicial Review (JR) overturning the search warrants issued for his home and office, Justice Alex Henderson has filed for a second to look at the legality of his arrest. The first respondent in the application is SIO Martin Bridger but it also includes SP Richard Coy and this time Acting Commissioner David George who swore in the Special constables in the Special Police investigation Team (SPIT).

Submitted by his legal team, Campbells Attorneys, yesterday the application suggests the arrest was unlawful as misconduct in a public office is not an offence for which a person can be arrested. Henderson was however, arrested on 24 September outside his home in front of his wife and child. The Judge was held for two days before being released on police bail. The arrest and bail conditions were dropped by the Acting Commissioner of Police last week when he contacted Campbells to say the Judge was no longer required to attend the police station and all restrictions on him were lifted.

In this Judicial Review Henderson is seeking to completely clear his name but also to point out that Bridger who made the decision to arrest him, Coy the Special Constable and member of SPIT  that actually arrested Henderson, and George who has overall responsibility, under section73 of the Police Law (revision 2006) for the special constables,  all acted unlawfully. Finding himself now also at the centre of Operation Tempura, David George who is leaving Cayman at the end of this week offered no comment on the situtation regarding the latest review applicaiton.

Henderson has already been given leave to appeal for damages by Sir Peter Cresswell who presided over the first JR and unequivocally overturned the search warrants and ordered an enquiry into damages. Campbells said today that the details of that enquiring are pending. Campbells also confirmed that in accordance with the orders of Cresswell the copies retained by SPIT of Henderson computer files have been returned, despite being in contrary to the court’s orders as they arrived yesterday afternoon (Tuesday 11 November) when they should have been returned by the deadline of 4pm on Friday 7 November.

CNS has also learned that the SPIT will not be appealing the decision of Sir Peter Creswell as they had first planned at the reading of the ruling. This not only means that Bridger et al has accepted that the warrants were unlawful it also means that Cresswell’s 120 page plus ruling will now be good law in the Cayman Island and set solid protections in place against future abuses of power with regards search warrants. One legal expert told CNS that it also goes to the very heart and certainly the integrity of the SPIT investigation.

“First the Chief Justice rejected this, now Cresswell’s ruling has confirmed the lack of integrity surrounding this investigation and last week the government stated emphatically that they no longer have faith in Operation Tempura as it has been named. Surely now Bridger must end this farce,” said the expert source.

Moreover, if Henderson is successful in his second judicial review application there will be a further damages enquiry and many people in Cayman’s legal community believe that while the award concerning the warrant will be bi enough if the arrest is demonstrated as unlawful the Cayman islands government will be forced to dig exceptionally deep to meet those potential compensation costs.

CNS would like to note that over the last few weeks we have submitted more then a dozen questions regarding the investigation and none of them have been answered. 

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Camana Bay gets down to the business of entertaining

Camana Bay gets down to the business of entertaining

| 12/11/2008 | 0 Comments

(CNS): With the first annual Children’s Book Festival taking place over Thanksgiving weekend and local held author Suzy Soto appearing at Books and Books Camana Bay continues to offer free entertainment for all the family. The children’s book festival is in partnership with the Cystic Fibrosis Trust starts at 10:30am on Saturday 29 November.

“We are very excited about the festival which we hope will stimulate a love of books and reading in children and also become a popular international visitor event for the Thanksgiving weekend,” said Susanna De Saram.  

Headlining the event are popular children’s authors, Julia Donaldson, whose picture book The Gruffalo (MacMillan Books for Children) is a favourite amongst pre-schoolers, and Kate Klimo, renowned editor and the author of The

Dragon in the Sock Drawer (Random House Children’s Books). The Children’s Book Festival is a week-long event, beginning with storytelling and crafts at Camana Bay from 10:30am to 3pm on Saturday 29 November followed by the Cayman Islands Cystic Fibrosis Trust Bedtime Story Fun Day at the Dart Family Park on Sunday 30 November from 2-5pm.

Also appearing at the Camana Bay Children’s Book Festival will be local writers such as Eme Paschalides, who wrote a storybook called This is Paradise, Dis is Cayman with her nine year-old son Hector, and Jamaican-born Jane Scaletta, author of Kimbo’s First Horse Show. Drawing on Cayman’s rich culturalheritage of oral storytelling, Nasaria Suckoo and Rita Estavanovich, both regular performers at Cayman’s annual Gimistory festival, will tell folk tales and stories passed down from generation to generation.

‘We want to provide the children of Cayman with an opportunity to hear authors from around the world and to bring books alive for them,’ says Sally Machado, manager of Books & Books at Camana Bay. ‘The festival will also be a wonderful celebration of local talent, giving visitors the chance to experience Caymanian culture at first hand.’

In between stories, kids can take part in a range of activities and crafts outdoors on The Paseo, the town’s pedestrian-only main street. A giant sandpit and games such as ‘Simon Says’ will entertain young tots, while bracelet-making, sidewalk chalking, hopscotch and a water balloon toss are on offer for older kids. Drumming classes and traditional kite making workshops will also be available for creative youngsters to try their hand at.

Volunteers from Maples and Calder, sponsors of the newly-launched Cayman Whistling Duck Book Award, will hold additional readings in the Kids Room at Books & Books as a quiet zone for children who might want to sit and read or listen to stories aimed at different age groups to those in the main event room. The stories read in the Kids Rooms will showcase books nominated for the Whistling Duck awards by authors such as Nick Bruel who visited Cayman for last year’s Bedtime Story Fun Day.

Saturday’s event at Camana Bay is free and open to the public, and is generously sponsored by the Cayman Islands Department of Tourism and Sunshine Suites Resort.

On Sunday 30 November, the action moves to the Dart Family Park in George Town where the Cystic

Fibrosis Trust Bedtime Story Fun Day will take place from 2:00pm to 5:00pm An art competition to draw the next Cystic Fibrosis Trust Christmas card, face-painting, a bouncy castle, puppet shows and a barbeque will keep the family entertained all afternoon, while kids will also have the chance to meet costume characters from some of their favourite books. The event is free and open to the public.

Pamela Fowler, the Fundraising and Event Manager of the Cayman Islands Cystic Fibrosis Trust, said the trust was delighted to build on the success of the Bedtime Story Fun Day from the past three years by expanding it into a Children’s Book Festival. “This is a new dimension in fundraising where we can promote something as essential as literacy whilst having fun raising funds at the same time.”

Meanwhile this Monday evening Suzy Soto will be reading from her cookbook called Cookin’ & Laughin’ in the Cayman Islands. After more than 45 years in the restaurant and tourism business, entrepreneur Suzy Soto has added writing to her repertoire. When Soto moved to the Cayman Islands in 1963, with her husband and 3 young daughters, the couple started a very successful hotel called The Tortuga Club in East End. Suzy ran the resort and worked closely with her friend “Cleo” in the kitchen, preparing three meals a day for guests. Through living and working in Grand Cayman, she inevitably developed a passion for island style cooking.
In 1981 Suzy opened what became the locally renowned and world famous Cracked Conch by the Sea restaurant. After a time, there were so many requests from the guests for recipes that she stopped giving them out and instead turned her attention to writing a cookbook. Cookin’ & Laughin’ in the Cayman Islands, is a labor of love. A compilation of recipes and memories, the cookbook is also a celebration of Suzy’s family.

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New face at the court

New face at the court

| 12/11/2008 | 0 Comments

(CNS): In keeping with government’s decentralisation programme Patricia Muschette has joined the Judicial Administration of Government as the first dedicated HR officer at Judicial Administration. With a master’s degree in human resource management and experience that included a period as client Retention Supervisor at theTampa-based branch of JP Morgan Chase, Muschette describes herself as having a passion for HR.

“It is fair to say that the managers and staff have all been energised by this appointment,” said Chief Officer Delene Cacho. “We have a new professional and relatively independent advocate for staff with respect to non-financial matters. Her sheer ability to focus on the area of human resources without having to deal with competing workplace demands as managers have had to do in the past will mean enhanced protection in this area for the interests of all – staff, management and the various publics that we serve.”

Muschette said all the managers want to see happy, motivated employees and she says  she has had a positive response from both groups in the three weeks since her arrival, many sharing perceptions that are fairly typical of most workplaces here and abroad.

Well known to many in Cayman, having served widely in the government and private sectors locally and abroad, her previous government roles include consultant to the Ministry of Health’s National Assessment of Living Conditions (NALC) and as the Immigration Department’s financial controller, a role which incorporated some HR duties.    

During her employment history, Muschette has produced drafts of employee handbooks; re-designed and implemented forms, procedures and policies for improving organisational operations and functions; designed reward and recognition programmes; and organised many staff functions and events to create an atmosphere of teamwork and camaraderie.

Among top priority aims, she said, are to develop the existing human resources policies and procedures manual; acquire insights into enhancing efficiency, including where feasible integrating information technology into manual operations; and investigate workplace training needs and opportunities, an initial focus being on front-end staff.

Despite the issue of budgetary constraints and staff remuneration freezes she will be reviewin job descriptions under an informal “time and motion” study of work functions.  Outcomes of that will hopefully translate not only into improved workplace operations but also, Muschette hopes, into an achievable incentive system.  Those incentives, she said, may take different forms, with non-financial recognition systems sometimes being as or more meaningful to employees.

She said that there were similarly many non-financial ways to address perceived or actual increase in work volume.  This is generally tackled by workplace tactics such as introducing IT to add speed and efficiency, and by devising new, more creative approaches to work tasks. In addition Muschette has some other aces up her sleeve such as job sharing, cross-training, re-training, and simple tactics such as development of templates. Another important goal which often results in enhanced staff motivation and hence elevated performance Muschette added is the strengthening of personal development and succession planning.

While her overall aim is broad-based, her immediate focus will be on the staff.

 “I always call myself the voice of staff,” Muschette said, indicating that while supervisors and managers had already impressed her with their vigilance in terms of monitoring and directing staff, until now, they have had to juggle attention to staff needs with work-related goals.  From her own experience and training, she said, it is “difficult to do justice” to human resources in a scenario of divided attention. 

With a master’s degree in human resource management, Mrs. Muschette anticipates pursuing, mainly by distance learning, a doctorate in industrial/organisational psychology.  She holds membership in the Cayman Islands Society of Human Resource Professionals; Society of Human Resource Professionals; and Delta Sigma Pi Professional Co-ed Fraternity

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Emergency aid

Emergency aid

| 12/11/2008 | 2 Comments

There is a fundamental problem with the way that emergency aid is being distributed by government on Cayman Brac: it is not getting to many of the most vulnerable people.

Everyone on the Brac needs help – we all want generators or ice if that’s not possible, batteries, water, staples, and too many homes need tarpaulin and building supplies – and there seems to be a fair amount of these items reaching the island. There are homes in all parts of the island that are significantly damaged or totally demolished, but the areas where the signs of Hurricane Paloma are most apparent are in the eastern districts.

Watering Place, the Creek and Spot Bay are devastated and the people there are hurting. Many are old and frail – some are staying at the Aston Rutty Centre, but many are roughing it out in their homes. Landlines are down and mobile coverage is only now beginning to be restored, though many of the elderly don’t have cell phones anyway. The distribution centre at the Aston Rutty Centre is too far away – not everyone knows about it and some can’t get there even if they did – and the centre at the airport may as well be on the moon. A number of cars in this area particularly are not usable post-Paloma, and people are just too busy drying clothes, cleaning up their houses, picking out salvagable possessions from the rubble, and trying to rebuild their lives.

No one I spoke to had heard of the hurricane relief command centre at the airport and had not seen anyone from there. On Tuesday at Watering Place – Day 4 after the storm – I asked everyone what government officials they had seen. The answer was the same – Julie ( MLA Julianna O’Connor Connolly), who has been organising private help from Grand Cayman, and Lyndon Martin (still regarded as "government" in Watering Place despite losing the last election), who has been working with a team of local volunteers to put up tarpaulin on leeking roofs. Many residents also said that Red Cross volunteers had been round to help.

The command centre is supposed to sending out teams to see who is particularly vulnerable and who needs immediate help. The answer is simple and it doesn’t take a team 5 days to figure it out: everyone east of The Bight. The government officials in charge need to load up trucks with the emergency supplies and take them to the areas that need them most – knock on doors if necessary – and distribute the water, ice and hygene supplies – and they need to do it today.

At the distribution centres, there are reports of people grabbing too much or sending several family members to get double supplies. The Leader of Government Business’s assertion that this is a caring community and that people would only take what they need is a lovely thought and I salute his optimism. However, human nature being what it is, these things will happen.

There will be plenty of time afterwards to figure out what could have been done better – I know that everyone is working as hard as they can – but the immediate priorty of the government should be to get supplies where they are needed and that means taking it to the people, not relying on a free-for-all at the two distribution centres.

Having said that, many things in the aftermath of the storm appear to be progressing impressively well, and there is a long list of heros. Here are just a few: the shelter wardens who worked for days on end without a break. Cayman Brac Power and Light crews, with CUC support, are working flat out and power is beginning to return to some areas. I see crews on the road at first light and still out well after dark. LIME (Cable and Wireless) staff also are out there restoring cell phone coverage, and the internet centres (I am currently working at the one in Stake Bay) are a godsend.

The team from the Planning Department who came to check out my house yesterday was a model in efficiency. And the three Red Cross members I met up at Spot Bay (part of that team of volunteers whose cars were broken into on Grand Cayman) are stars in anybody’s book. I will be writing about them in time.

The Brac will survive, but the government needs to make sure that the most vulnerable do too. Take the help to them. They need it now.

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High school wins funds for reading project

High school wins funds for reading project

| 12/11/2008 | 0 Comments

(CNS): John Gray High School (JGHS) has received CI$12,000 KYD to help fund its “Blueprint for Literacy” initiative after winning the dms Organization Ltd. Joanna Clarke Excellence in Education Award (JCA) 2008. The JGHS project aims to ensure that all high school students, upon graduation, will be able to perform at their grade levels and pass at least four external exams.


The JGHS literacy committee was established in September 2005, and the grant will assist in further funding and ensuring the continued success of their ongoing programme, facilitating the purchase of 20 books for each of their 50 classroom libraries, books for book club members and audio books for classroom use and leisure reading.

“We had a number of great applicants and even better finalists. John Gray High School had an exceptionally impressive initiative which we are confident will succeed and are honoured to support – congratulations to them in this achievement,” said Don Seymour, President of dms Organization.

The other finalists recognized at the ceremony included East End Primary School (funding for musical instruments); North Side Primary School (Read it! Rate it! Release it! programme); PACE High School (Work Education Project); and Prospect Primary School (Passport to Peace programme).

The Award celebrates the exemplary service of longtime educator  Joanna Clarke and provides funding up to $12,000 KYD annually. dms launched this cornerstone education initiative to recognize the efforts of all persons and organizations that contribute to education in the Cayman Islands. The first recipient (2007) of the award was Savannah Primary School PTA, which used the funding to pay for new playground equipment.

Seymour said investing in the education of our children is paramount to the future of Cayman, and this award is part of our ongoing commitment to recognize education initiatives and provide them the support to succeed “Ms. Clarke was a natural choice for me as she played a significant role in my education and in the education of so many of Cayman’s children. Ms. Clarke has dedicated her life to children, steering Cayman’s youth in the right direction for over 40 years.”



The call for applicants for the 2008 JCA began in June with an island-wide advertising, publicity and promotional campaign titled “12,000 Reasons” highlighting the many reasons to invest in education in the Cayman Islands.

The JCA Committee carefully reviewed all applications submitted and narrowed the selection down to five finalists whom were invited to give a oral presentation outlining their project and demonstrating how the five JCA criteria would be met by their proposed project. The JCA criteria are: ensuring that the initiative contributes to and promotes excellence in education in the Cayman Islands; is sustainable and measurable; contributes to increase parental and/or community involvement in education; is affiliated with a reputable educational institution or organization; and demonstrates a proven history in successful education projects and/or teaching.

Literacy Education Specialist Tanya Marie Dwigh explained that after each committee member indicated their numerical rating, an average score was determined for each component of the selection criteria mentioned above. “Those average scores were then combined to create an overall score for each project. Based on the final numerical score for each project, we were able to designate the funds for this year’s award,” she said.

Chairperson of the Joanna Clarke Award Committee Clarke added that she was  truly honoured to be the namesake for the.

“My passion has always been to enhance the education of Cayman’s children as they represent the future of our island.”

Seymour thanked all the individuals and organizations for taking the time to submit their applications. “We appreciate all applicants’ efforts to improve the education of Cayman’s youth and encourage you to continue in your strides to make a difference – it takes a community effort. We encourage all of the local schools to apply for funding for the 2009 Joanna Clarke Excellence in Education Award.”


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Dive industry to recognise key players

Dive industry to recognise key players

| 12/11/2008 | 0 Comments

(CNS): The International Scuba Diving Hall of Fame (ISDHF) has announced that it will induct six extraordinary new members this coming January. Joining the ranks of famous divers such as Jacques-Yves Cousteau, Gustav Dalla Valle, and Bob Soto will be an important historical contributor, an avid photographer turned manufacturer, the “World’s Greatest Divemaster”, a photographer who named Stingray City, and two brothers with an invention that gave underwater film a face.

 The Ceremony will be held on January 29, 2009, where these pioneers, artists and entrepreneurs will be formally inducted for their outstanding contributions to the sport. The Department of Tourism has worked in conjunction with ISDHF to develop a virtual museum and display select rare artefacts including, the Boutan housing replica from 1893 and his attempts at incredible underwater photography, a home-made Montgomery Ward, circa 1950, made from a Montgomery Ward pressure cooker, this an example of the ingenuity of early underwater photographers and film makers, Nikonos II, a camera that hit the market in 1963 after Nikon bought the popular French made Calypso camera from La Spiroteqhnique.

The honorees are…… Kimiuo Aisek who was raised on the island of Truk in Micronesia and a first-hand witness to the American attack on the Japanese fleet at Truk Lagoon in 1944. After diving the location for years and discovering all of the wrecks, Kimiuo finally opened Truk Lagoon’s first dive facility in 1973 that would enable visitors to dive the Japanese wrecks. Thousands of divers and dozens of film crews have experienced the majestic sunken wrecks because of Kimiuo’s hard work and dedication. This world-renowned dive shop still welcomes divers under the management of Kimiuo’s son – Gradvin Aisek.

Dive industry to recognise key players who at the age of 19had his first sight of the Red Sea andopened his first dive centre in 1970 followed by a series of diving stations along the Sinai Coast. Then in 1973 he opened the Red Sea Divers Centre in Sharm el Sheikh, which would later host countless divers and film crews from across the globe. Soon after, his live-aboard vessels explored the entire Red Sea and Indian Ocean atolls. Also a passionate photographer, he now is the owner of the Fantasea Line, manufacturing and distributing underwater photo equipment.

Larry Smith began a diving career that would span 3 ½ decades and more than 20,000 dives. He had a hand in developing operations in Cayman and Jamaica; however, he is most noted for his time spent at Kungkungan Bay Resort in his adopted home, Indonesia. There he combined a keen eye for small critters with his world-famous personality, to become a larger-than-life figure that popularized an entire subculture of scuba: muck diving. The “World’s Greatest Divemaster”, Larry inspired a generation of underwater naturalists ranging from the Indonesian dive guides  he trained to recreational divers and world-class underwater photographers and writers.

Geri Murphy is the most published female underwater photo journalist with an impressive record of more than 200 magazine cover shots and thousands of published articles, photos and books. With a contribution to the film industry, she has spent the last 30 years travelling around the world. Geri was the first photo journalist to photograph and document Stingray City – which she named in the first story ever written about this now world famous dive site in the Cayman Islands. She continues to shoot underwater photos in exotic locations around the world.

 George and J. Earnest Williamson will be the first to receive an award in a new category of inductees called Early Pioneers. In the early part of the last century the Williamson brothers developed an underwater salvage viewing sphere invented by their father into an underwater film platform. Consisting of two distinct parts, it was known as the Williamson Submarine Tube coupled with the Photosphere, which was the film platform at the end of it. In 1915, they created a movie version of Jules Verne’s 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea on location in the Bahamas. After opening in 1916, it broke box office records across America, likely because it was the world’s first underwater movie and included several special effects. The Williamson’s went on to make more underwater movies and one brother was later involved in recovering coral to build a reef inside a Chicago Museum. Later, J.E. Williamson converted it into an underwater post office where collectible letters were sold, then stamped and franked as posted from Sea Floor, Bahamas.

 The International Scuba Diving Hall of Fame is designed to honour individuals whose contribution to the sport of scuba diving has been immeasurable. Coming from diverse backgrounds and fields, all inductees possess a track record of offerings to the development, growth and/or promotion of the sport of recreational scuba diving around the world. The honour bestowed upon them commemorates the achievements and contributions of the champions of diving.

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Veterans recall fallen men

Veterans recall fallen men

| 12/11/2008 | 0 Comments

(CNS): Although the traditional Sunday Remembrance service was cancelled due tot he passage of Hurricane Paloma the horrors of war and fallen soldiers of the past were remembered during the Cayman Islands Veterans’ Association (CIVA) ceremony which took place yesterday (Tuesday, 11 November). 

In spite of ongoing local post-hurricane emergency response efforts the CIVA maintained its observation of the hour of remembrance — 11:00 a.m. on 11 November — and laid the traditional wreath to honour former servicemen and women as the small gathering recalled the hour and day when hostilities ceased, ending World War I.

A special guest at this ceremony was visiting Royal Commonwealth Ex-Services League representative, Lieutenant Colonel Chris Warren, who laid the wreath. He joined CIVA President Capt Dale Banks and a few other veterans at the Elmslie Memorial Church on the George Town waterfront. Elmslie’s Administrator John Macmillian led the prayers.

Also attending the event were CIVA members Ewart Ebanks, Shane Bothwell, Peter Massie and Graham Walker.  Several visiting cruise passengers, including veterans, were present. More than 20 million military and civilian deaths occurred inWorld War I, with a similar number of injuries.  Then, in World War II, an estimated 60 million people died, including some 40 million civilians through air raids, disease, starvation and genocide.

For the men of Cayman, World War II Royal Navy Reserve duties focused around Trinidad in the southern Caribbean. That island was then the only source of oil for the British forces.

However, Cayman’s involvement in the war effort extended to maintaining a strong Home Guard, serving in global merchant marine support efforts, and building the wooden (mine-deterrent) minesweepers for use in Caribbean waters.

The Cayman Islands Veterans’ Association’s Remembrance Day ceremony was also an unplanned but welcomed addition to the vacation agenda for Capt Bob Long, US Coast Guard (Ret) and his wife Kim. On shore visit during their Caribbean cruise, the Californians spoke with local veterans and shared war experiences.  Long said he served on the only Coast Guard vessel stationed in the Bering Sea between the USA and the then USSR. Both of Mrs Long’s parents also served in the US Marine Corps.

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Young sailors face tough going

Young sailors face tough going

| 12/11/2008 | 0 Comments

(CNS): Before anyone had even hear of Hurricane Paloma Cayman’s young sailors were enjoying some challenging ocean conditions during this year’s Scotiabank Cayman Islands Youth Sailing Championships which were held on 1 & 2 November at the Cayman Islands Sailing Club and proved to be an enjoyable event for both participants and spectators alike.

On the first day of racing the advanced Optimist and Byte sailors endured wind speeds above 20 knots and blinding rain. Unfortunately, due to the very windy and rainy conditions, racing in the Optimist beginner fleet had to be cancelled. However on the second day of racing, the weather relented somewhat and the slower wind speeds allowed all three fleets to be able to get onto the water for a great day of racing.

A total of 15 races were held and Stuart Jennings (16) dominated the Byte fleet by winning every race. In the Optimist fleet, Matthew Courtis (13) showed his speed and consistency on the water and also won very race in his class. Appropriately he won the Optimist class in a Scotiabank sponsored boat. Meanwhile, promising newcomer Jamie Williams (8) also demonstrated his skill and endurance by winning the Optimist beginner fleet.

Director of Sailing, Michael Weber, acknowledged the amount of effort that was put into the event by all parties involved. “This was a very tiring regatta for the sailors and I am very happy with their hard work on the water,” he said. “We continue to see improvement and all of the sailors should be very happy with their results.”

 He also expressed his gratitude towards Scotiabank, for their “continued support for youth sailing in the Cayman Islands”. This is now the second year that Scotiabank has sponsored the event.

The annual Laser National Championships will be held on 29th & 30th November 2008 and is open to youth and adult Laser sailors. For more information on racing at the Cayman Islands Sailing Club, please contact







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Men beached by Paloma remain in custody

Men beached by Paloma remain in custody

| 12/11/2008 | 0 Comments

(CNS): Police said yesterday that eight men who were found aboard a boat beached in Little Cayman following the passing of Hurricane Paloma have been detained for illegal entry. Their nationalities are apparently unknown but the men were discovered safe and uninjured aboard the boat on the north side of the island on Saturday safe and uninjured.

The men were first accommodated at the Little Cayman Beach Resort and were then spoken to by the local police. On Monday (November 10), Marine Officers and Drugs Task Force officers traveled to Little Cayman aboard Cayman Defender, supported by Cayman Protector, to continue with enquiries.

The vessel that the men were on, as well as a second, smaller boat found birthed on the beach, were searched and the men have been detained for illegal entry into the Cayman Islands. The men, none of whom are Caymanian, will now be dealt with by Immigration officers. Investigations are continuing to ascertain and confirm the men’s nationalities and purpose for being on the water.

Anyone with information about crime taking place in the Cayman Islands should contact their local police station or Crime Stoppers on 800-8477 (TIPS). All persons calling crime stoppers remain anonymous, and are eligible for a reward of up to $1000, should their information lead to an arrest or recovery of property/drugs.

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