Fatal road accident ends Ragga’s life
Antoina Chapman had begun to make plans to go to church on Sunday, accompanied by her youngest brother Anderson Orlando Andy Ragga Grandison.
The 49-year-old Grandison was planning to reform his life and his sister was holding his hands and encouraging him.
A drug addict for nearly 15 years, he had promised his 54-year-old sister that he wanted to change and it was meant to be a celebratory event for the Watermill Place, Bayville, St Michael family.
However, tragedy struck Thursday night as the renowned “life of the party” became Barbados’ 11th road fatality for the year, topping the ten recorded for all of last year.
The youngest among seven siblings, Grandison was making his way to his sister’s home for dinner when his bicycle collided with a car driven by 39-year-old Joe-Anne Roberts along Culloden Road, St Michael.
Grandison died at the scene, having suffered a broken neck among other injuries.
Chapman last saw her brother the previous night. They had walked together across the Bayville pasture to his childhood home in Chelston Avenue.
It was during that walk that Grandison promised to turn his life around.
“He walked with me and said he would come to church on Sunday. He said he bring a pants and shirt down here and he want me to wash it and press it for him; that he is coming to church on Sunday.
“That was the last time I spoke to my brother,” a teary-eyed Chapman told Barbados TODAY in the presence of her daughter Alecia Chapman and niece Marie-Anne Davis.
Chapman’s face betrayed her pain and she openly wept as she recalled her brother’s desire to go into farming if he were able to break his drug habit.
“He said, ‘I’m going to change my life because I’m not smoking any more dope. If I get any fruit trees and I can get money, I would get money to keep in my pocket.’”
Aside from the drug problem, Chapman told Barbados TODAY everyone liked her youngest brother –– who she described as a jovial and humorous character –– and very few had anything negative to say about him.
“He is a very loving man and he loved his family, he loved to crack jokes and even if you vex, he would say or do something to make you laugh. You have to laugh, you can’t be mad.”
Raised in New York by his father David Grandison from the age of eleven, Ragga led a fulfilling life, working at the Government printery and the Queen Elizabeth Hospital.
But he would fall victim to illegal drugs, becoming addicted to cocaine. However, this did nothing to get in the way of the relationship which the father of one enjoyed with his family and relatives.
He was close to his niece Marie-Anne Davis, with whom he shared the same birthday, and who broke down as the reality struck home that Grandison had died. Still in disbelief, Davis said not once did she ever think her uncle would become a road accident statistic.
“He didn’t deserve to die the way how he died,” Davis cried. “My uncle wasn’t bad, he just had a drug problem.”