The families of Bahamian diplomat Alrae Ramsey, 28, and Blair John, 29, began to scream at the sight of the British Airways 253 aircraft on the tarmac at Lynden Pindling International Airport.
“Lord, no,” one relative shrieked.
It was the final flight of the two men who reportedly drowned in Turin, Italy, earlier this month.
Authorities said the airline denied a request for the families to receive the coffins on the tarmac, so their first glimpse of Ramsey’s and John’s remains came nearly an hour later at 4:26 p.m. in a sun-baked warehouse parking lot.
Some wiped away tears at the site as a forklift carrying the coffins slowly navigated through the crowd.
Mothers, fathers, aunts, uncles and cousins began to holler as the forklift came to a halt.
Anita Ramsey, the mother of Alrae Ramsey, was seen with her arms stretched across her son’s dark colored coffin which was covered in a black nylon material.
“Oh, my baby, I love you,” she repeated tearfully.
After a mere five minutes, Ramsey was guided away from the luggage carrier, which contained her son’s coffin, to make way for employees from a funeral home.
Although her eyes were bloodshot from tears, she continued crying.
Minister of Foreign Affairs Darren Henfield embraced the grieving mother, offering her words of condolences.
Moments later, two men were seen loading Alrae Ramsey’s coffin into the back of a black hearse.
A few steps away, Cathleen Rahming, the mother of John, was seen inconsolably crying as family members guided her to a blue luggage carrier where her son’s coffin lay.
She was surrounded by a dozen relatives as she sobbed over John’s remains.
Her sister and youngest son, who wiped tears from his eyes, held Rahming tightly, attempting to soothe her as her sobbing turned to hollering.
She was carried away before John’s remains were loaded onto the back of the remaining hearse.
Family members’ faint sobs were heard as the hearses drove away, taking the remains of Ramsey and John to Bethel Brothers Morticians and Crematorium.
Both men are expected to be buried on Saturday in New Providence.
Henfield said the families intend to complete independent autopsies today.
Education: Goldsmith, University of London, MA in Race, Media and Social Justice
Latest posts by Jasper Ward (see all)
- Shantytown ban issued - September 16, 2019
- UN chief predicts more intense storms - September 16, 2019
- Freeport man used jet ski to rescue 60 people from Dorian - September 16, 2019