Boy’s father devastated by news of his death


The biological father of six-year-old Jahan King has been told of the death of his son. However, John King, who is soon-to-be released from a Canadian jail, still has no idea that Jahan had been the victim of reported abuse.

So far, all he has been told is that his only child died following an asthma attack.

However, in a letter, sent to his foster mother in Barbados and addressed to his now deceased son, King openly shares his feelings about the boy’s untimely death. He also expresses strong regret over the fact that he was not around to save the boy’s life.


I’m so very sorry that I wasn’t there to save you. I blame myself because in the past, whenever you had an asthma attack I was there for you to lean on, and to whisper in your ear that daddy’s here.

The one time I wasn’t there, you had to pass away,” he said in his emotional letter in which he remarked: “ Life can be so unfair at times”.

King, who admittedly broke down in tears upon hearing the “terrible” news of the six-year-old’s death, is still in shock over his passing.

Jahan and his dad who raised him before his incarceration.

I still can’t believe that my little champion is gone, ‘my sport’,” the letter states.

In it, the doting dad remembered his son as a boy full of life and with much promise.

You were truly unique, extraordinary, intelligent, humble, kindhearted, inquisitive, super handsome, my only beloved son and one of God’s most favoured earth angels,” he said, while expressing profound hurt over the fact that he will not be able to attend his funeral.

The letter, signed “Yours Passionately Daddy” was penned in a Canadian jail.

I want you to know it isn’t by choice, it’s by force, but for sure I’ll be there in spirit and watching you go all the way to heaven.”

However, since learning of Jahan’s death, he said he could not help but ask God, “why did he had to take you so soon?”

. . . I may never know and that’s one of the most hurtful parts,” King says.

I know that in your last painful moments, you were probably wondering where is your daddy.

But being totally honest my son, I was across the other side of the globe and incarcerated. I am ultimately sorry, my dear beloved son, please find it in your heart to forgive me one day.

So until we meet again in the afterlife, your pain and suffering is over now my beloved son,” he continues.

The boy’s father also makes the pronouncement that “all kids your age get an automatic pass into heaven, so you can frolic, sing and play with all the other children and angels until daddy gets there.

I will always love and remember you Jahan and you can never be replaced. ‘My sport!’”


DSC_2560The doting dad raised Jahan from a baby to age five before getting in trouble with the Canadian authorities.

He is expected back in Barbados in few weeks time and one of closest relatives says she is now fearful of what will be his reaction when he gets a full understanding of the circumstances surrounding the demise of his son.

Foster mom Ena Browne regrets releasing Jahan to his mother.

Speaking to Barbados TODAY, foster mother Ena Browne, who raised King from the time he was a child, said that she was currently making preparations for counselling as soon as King gets home.

She said King, who is in his 30’s, loved his only child more than anything else in the world, and was now saying he has nothing else to live for.

Asked what she thought his possible reaction would be upon his return home, she said it was hard to tell.

I am not going to tell [you] what I fear. I hope and pray that the Lord give him enough strength to put God in front. I will try to get some counselling for him and that is the most I can do.

But from the time he gets back home he is going to hear and he is going to see because the pictures are all over,” said a concerned Browne, who revealed that Jahan was supposed to be present at the airport to greet his father when he returned to the island.

However, the six-year-old died at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital last Monday, after arriving there with his mother Lasonta Gill around 12:15 a.m.

Margaret Gill is full of anger, frustration and pain.
Margaret Gill is full of anger, frustration and pain.

Up to today, the boy’s mother was still refusing to comment publicly on his death. However, other family members, including his maternal grandmother, have been publicly expressing their outrage.

Margaret Gill told Barbados TODAY last week that the child, who lived with his mother and her boyfriend at their Jackson, St Michael home, was a victim of abuse.

She also put the blame for his death squarely on the shoulders of the state-run Child Care Board (CCB), which she said was made aware of Jahan’s situation, but did nothing.

In a statement yesterday, the CCB acknowledged that it did receive reports of injuries to the child and that its officers had been actively conducting investigations which were ongoing at the time of his death.

The Board is presently undertaking a full review of the matter and gives the public its assurance that it will continue to vigorously execute its stated mandate to offer protection to all children in need of such services,” the CCB said in the statement released by its Chairman Ken Knight.

However, the boy’s outspoken grandmother Margaret immediately responded saying it was simply a little too late.

I beg them over and over, do not let that child go back home with the mother and they did nothing,” she told Barbados TODAY.

Therefore, to her, the Board’s statement of condolence to the family was “nonsense”.

Ena Browne still has a number of unanswered questions

Also still struggling to come to grips with tragedy, foster mother Browne regrets the day that she allowed Jahan to leave her home.

She explained that both the deceased child and his mother Lasonta were living with her until she and King separated while Jahan was still a toddler.

Initially, the 26-year-old mother had left the child in the care of his father and moved back to her mother Margaret’s home.

However, Browne explained that last October, she received a call from her foster son who told her to hand over Jahan to his mother until he returned home, because he was aware that Browne had a health challenge.

If I knew this was going to happen, he [Jahan] would have been here and still alive. But I thought because [John] raised Jahan it would have been good for [Jahan] to spend some time with [Lasonta] before he gets back,” said a grieving Browne.

The 65-year-old woman, who suffers with high blood pressure, said since handing over the child, she often pleaded with the mother to bring him over to spend weekends with her. However, she said, her pleas were never answered.

This memorial now hangs outside Ena Browne's Deacons Farm, St Michael home.
This memorial now hangs outside Ena Browne’s Deacons Farm, St Michael home.

All of this time he was going through this and she didn’t want me to know, so that is why she did not send him,” Browne concluded.

I passed by the mother to look for Jahan and her mother told me Lasonta doesn’t live there.

She said, ‘Lasonta wait until she [Margaret] went to work and move out’.

[Margaret] had told [Lasonta], don’t take Jahan if she is leaving because John say he don’t want Jahan living at no man.”

Browne also recalled that sometime in April, Margaret had shown her a picture of her grandson’s bruised face.

One of the photographs circulating on social media showing the boy's bruises.
One of the photographs circulating on social media showing the boy’s bruises.

She told me that Lasonta say a centipede bite him. Then a centipede bite the hand, then a centipede gave him the bruises. You mean the centipede keep coming back all the time?

So what happen to the bruises here [on his side]? What happen to the fingerprints? What happen to the finger that was broken?” the foster mother asked aloud.

I understand her boyfriend say that he fell out of a bus. What happen to the different bruises in his back? The centipede keep coming back and doing these things?”

Ena Browne says she was concerned about reports of abuse.


While cautioning that “God does not sleep”, Browne told Barbados TODAY she was also very perturbed over the fact that she had learnt of her grandson’s death from sources other than his mother.

She took this child from here and didn’t have the gall to call back here and tell me he sick, he is in hospital or nothing.

Margaret came here Monday morning and shocked me with the news. And I say, ‘I am not going to call [Lasonta]. I want to see if she isn’t going to call and tell me anything’.”

However, the wait proved unbearable for the foster mom, who eventually picked up the phone and called Jahan’s mother.

I say, ‘Lasonta what happen to Jahan?’ [She said] ‘well, Jahan dead’. I say, ‘well what happened?’ [She said], ‘Jahan wasn’t feeling good last night and then he get short of breath and I called the ambulance.

Then the ambulance came and by the time them get here he was foaming at the mouth. And by the time them get to the hospital and tried to revive him, he passed’,” she recalled the boy’s mother as having said to her.

Hitting the table she was sitting at in her patio lightly with the tip of her fingers, Browne continued: “She [Lasonta] had no emotion at all. And I don’t know how a mother could take that so lightly.

I am very disappointed at her because when she was living at me, she was a different person. I would not lie, she was a good mother to Jahan when she was living here.”

King and his mother Lasonta Gill in happier times.
King and his mother Lasonta Gill in happier times.

The retired Government worker indicated that she visited Lawrence T Gay Memorial Primary School on Friday to speak authorities there who confirmed that since April, Jahan had been showing up at school with marks and bruises about his body.

I did not know that this was going on. I had no idea,” said an inconsolable Browne.

With pain etched on her face, Browne said she could not even begin to imagine, the trauma the child had experienced.

The broken fingers, the lash in he face that I see in the pictures. He probably was out there begging for help. I can imagine him [not being able to] sleep when the night come with that pain.

This is more than any child could bear and I knew nothing,” she said, noting that she had not heard from the boy’s mother since last Monday.

With an autopsy due to be carried out this week, Browne, who is currently seeking to get Jahan’s body released to her for burial, declared: “Even if the autopsy say that he died from asthma, he still had problems and they are there to see.”

As for the boy’s father, she said after much effort, she was able to speak to King directly and inform him that his son had died.

Browne said her foster son could be heard on other line crying out, which was too much for her to handle. She eventually told him she had to go.

However, she shared with Barbados TODAY, a letter, which was penned by King from his prison cell, in which he expressed undying love for his son.

The letter, which was delivered at Browne’s home last week, is due to be read out at the boy’s funeral, a date for which is still to be announced.

42 Responses to Boy’s father devastated by news of his death

  1. Doria Alleyne
    Doria Alleyne July 5, 2015 at 3:16 pm

    🙁 🙁 🙁 🙁 RIP little angel,May God’s light always shine upon you.<3 <3

  2. Rawle Spooner
    Rawle Spooner July 5, 2015 at 3:16 pm

    The more i hear about this kid untimely death the more none of it makes any damm sense whatsoever,this case needs a serious investigation plain and simple.

  3. Miranda Douglas
    Miranda Douglas July 5, 2015 at 3:20 pm

    this is very sad

  4. Dexter Squires
    Dexter Squires July 5, 2015 at 3:23 pm

    if he was me my next charge will be a double homocide when i land back in bim

  5. Baj Beau
    Baj Beau July 5, 2015 at 4:07 pm

    When he lands in Bim and gets that story, i just prefer to be locked away in the safety of my home. However, i hope he doesnt run himself in any trouble. None of the two ah dem aint worth a half grain of salt. Lord, soothe the heart and mind of this grieving father.

  6. Patrick Blackman July 5, 2015 at 4:11 pm

    And now the rest of the story unfolds, lets see where it leads us.

  7. Tammy Sweets
    Tammy Sweets July 5, 2015 at 4:16 pm

    Made me cry, he love his son cuddear. His dad made mistakes in life, we all do. But lord help the baby mudda and she mannn when he find out the truth. Good thing he isnt around now they are roaming the streets cause let me tell ya!

  8. Bobo July 5, 2015 at 4:28 pm

    While in Barbados, Couple weeks ago I personally called the child care -board for a ten year child who needs their help urgently –(psychotherapy) nothing has been done. My opinion black people take abuse as their culture

  9. Ryvan Bigman
    Ryvan Bigman July 5, 2015 at 4:41 pm

    I saw a pic with the left side of the lil boy red and swollen like someone hit him. If my son face was like that I’m going to prison for murder. Where was his guardians? The system is F up, this is really serious, innocent kids are dying here. The Government in Barbados need to step up and do something.

    Kids dying from abuse.

    Innocent people dying from Guns.

    To many teens having unprotected sex.

    The new university is prison

    What a world we living in SMH….

    • Ryvan Bigman
      Ryvan Bigman July 5, 2015 at 5:10 pm

      That to, all these rappers sending out the wrong message

    • Ryvan Bigman
      Ryvan Bigman July 5, 2015 at 5:36 pm

      Ok something still need to be done

  10. Ryvan Bigman
    Ryvan Bigman July 5, 2015 at 4:41 pm

    I saw a pic with the left side of the lil boy red and swollen like someone hit him. If my son face was like that I’m going to prison for murder. Where was his guardians? The system is F up, this is really serious, innocent kids are dying here. The Government in Barbados need to step up and do something.

    Kids dying from abuse.

    Innocent people dying from Guns.

    To many teens having unprotected sex.

    The new university is prison

    What a world we living in SMH….

    • Ryvan Bigman
      Ryvan Bigman July 5, 2015 at 5:10 pm

      That to, all these rappers sending out the wrong message

    • Ryvan Bigman
      Ryvan Bigman July 5, 2015 at 5:36 pm

      Ok something still need to be done

  11. Amanda Greaves
    Amanda Greaves July 5, 2015 at 4:41 pm

    Why u all telling lies and think it is right when he comes back and hears the truth its going to be hell on earth in barbados

  12. Hope Bless
    Hope Bless July 5, 2015 at 4:53 pm

    Poor man have to come back here and no son

  13. Sklar Smith
    Sklar Smith July 5, 2015 at 5:11 pm

    Its amazing how sm female will do anything to feel ah warm body nxt to theirs,u mean to tell me u kill d mn hearbeat n u gine n still lie to he?boy children are always a threat to step fathers the insecure ones who nvr gt d love n attention dey deserved as kids.ladies b mindful who u introduced in ur kids life once u c a problem frm day 1 ley d mn go bout he crosses now I wnt d father kill both ah dem n walk free cause dey both deserve beating to death she to damn stupid u really kill u child fa ah mn ?if he unfair u sn like dat did it ever ran tru u mnd dat ds mn gt childhood issues n needed hlp?shame at u woman

  14. Alison Lucas
    Alison Lucas July 5, 2015 at 5:11 pm

    With tears in my eyes for this innocent child, I hope the hospital or funeral home keeps his body for the few weeks untill his Father’s return. From reading the news he seemed like a good father.I know that maybe asking too much, so instead Rest on with your maker little one away from this sometimes very wicked World.

  15. Hope Bless
    Hope Bless July 5, 2015 at 5:31 pm

    Reading this made me cry that is so painful lord so when he come back hear all the talk and see the picture

  16. Dexter Squires
    Dexter Squires July 5, 2015 at 6:09 pm

    The childcare board officers most of them dey for the money n not for the interest of the children’s…. I know cause I’m speaking from my experience

  17. Jane Brathwaite
    Jane Brathwaite July 5, 2015 at 6:32 pm

    This is something else hear……

  18. Ever Bless Sales
    Ever Bless Sales July 5, 2015 at 6:35 pm

    *Tears..RIP I know your dad love you without a doubt!!

  19. Bostonian July 5, 2015 at 7:54 pm

    I see that man really love his son and I feel his pain as a father, but personally speaking getting into more trouble ain’t going to help, I know trust in the authority is low but getting into trouble only caused more harm to a already traumatized family, I hope he think before he do,blessed be the glory

  20. Elaine Crichlow
    Elaine Crichlow July 5, 2015 at 8:07 pm

    So sad.

  21. Tony Waterman July 5, 2015 at 10:15 pm

    @Bobo!!!! You wrote “”My opinion black people take abuse as their culture”” well!!! it is also a fact, a Haitian Man here in Ottawa, Raped a Young Girl, and when he appeared in Court to answer the Charged, he told the Court !!! Your Honour. Rape is part of my Culture, The Judge Gave him the Maximum sentence allowed under the law (15-25)
    The CCB acknowledges that they knew about the Alleged Abuse of Jahan, yet no one went to visit him when he was away from home at School, where he would be less scared to talk to them, also, the Principal and Teachers at Lawrence T Gay, ahs some answering to do, How cn you have a Pupil that is in Class every day and none of the Teachers that are supposedly Teachinbg Him, NEVER Noticed Injuries like what is posted in the papers ??
    My Daughter has a Birthmark on her back Right Shoulder, and when she was changing her Clothes for Gym Class the Teacher saw the Mark, and i Got a Call from the School, which i promptly directed them to Speak to her Pediatrician, who verified that it was indeed a Birthmark, What a difference between how things are done here as against in Barbados.
    In your case if that youngster you called them about, gets no treatment and turns out a Killer or worse, they will probably say that they were INVESTIGATING,
    A lack of Training and dedication to the Job, that’s whats needed again in Barbados, right now it is just put in my time and collect my Paycheck and Pension.

  22. Tony Waterman July 5, 2015 at 10:18 pm

    @Bostonian!!!! I agree with you 110%, it would make more sense to become an Advocate for Abused Children, and light some fires under the %$#@& of the people at the CCB

  23. nanci July 6, 2015 at 10:23 am

    this is just sickening, the CCB needs to step up and take abuse kids out the home, first it was shemar and now this little boy. Abuse is part of the culture of barbados because nothing is happening at a fast speed. Mothers need to love their kids first instead of focusing on the men in their lives.

  24. Charles Worrell July 6, 2015 at 2:02 pm

    As I read all of these comments; the views of the different relatives, it becomes so amazing to find so much information around and yet EVERYONE is willing to just do enough to say they checked. Barbados long ago would have gotten up and beat down the offices of the CCB; they would have gone to the Police and sometimes they would have gone into that house and get that infant child. WHEN DID WE BECOME SATISFIED WITH JUST DOING ENOUGH?
    I cant even find the Barbados in grew up in anymore! The insensitivity, the don’t-care-less; the response only if it is too near us. THIS HAS NEVER BEEN BARBADOS!
    THIS boy is dead because NO-ONE DARED TO GO FURTHER. ALL the signs and yet, NOTHING.
    Of course he passed and the noise begins and they are those sounding more sad than others but if the TRUTH BE TOLD, THIS LITTLE KID IS GONE BECAUSE WE FAILED, YES, WE DARNED FAILED TO BE EACH OTHER’S KEEPER. IF you want to do this little kid a favor, GET YOUR ASSES OUT OF YOUR MOUTH AND LET THIS NOT HAPPEN TO ANYONE ELSE.
    IF IT IS A CHILD…let it not happen;
    If it is a WOMAN, …let it not happen;
    If it is a MAN, let it not happen EVER AGAIN!
    DO NOT MIND those who are now better off and can afford houses away from you, PEOPLE, IT IS TIME TO FIND OURSELVES AGAIN! IT IS TIME, TO LOOK OUT FOR EACH OTHER AGAIN;
    AS to the father, you need to come back here and start doing right. You had no right in jail, because you had a son that depended on you and you should have done better and so, this love or hurt or whatever it is others are thinking you will return and show, better be something good IN HONOR of your son.
    let this be a time of deep thought and CHANGE.

  25. Panwallie July 6, 2015 at 5:44 pm

    At six years old, God saw that the road was going to be to rough and the hill too hard to climb for this child. Is a bad father better than no father at all?


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