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T&T OLYMPIC TEAM TTO PARTNERS

Fam­i­ly, friends and ac­quain­tances of Jaf­fa at the Oval chef Joe Brown are tak­ing to so­cial me­dia and oth­er plat­forms to pay trib­ute to him.

Brown, along with bpTT man­ag­er Joan­na Banks, were killed when a car ploughed in­to a group of 14 cy­clists along the Churchill Roo­sevelt High­way ear­li­er Sat­ur­day.

One of the first per­sons to do so was Ar­rive Alive’s Sharon In­gle­field.

“Our con­do­lences go out to the fam­i­lies of the loved ones lost on the Beetham this morn­ing! Our con­do­lences to the cy­cling fra­ter­ni­ty! We are dev­as­tat­ed by to­day’s events. Our thoughts and prayers are with you,” In­gle­field said in a state­ment.

Not­ing that Brown had spon­sored Ar­rive Alive’s World Day of Re­mem­brance for Road Traf­fic Vic­tims over the years, she said it was “trag­ic he should lose his life on our roads.”

“Our roads con­tin­ue to be a dan­ger­ous en­vi­ron­ment and we all have a re­spon­si­bil­i­ty, more par­tic­u­lar­ly dri­vers, to re­spect vul­ner­a­ble road users like cy­clists and pedes­tri­ans,” she said.

In­gle­field said un­for­tu­nate­ly, to Ar­rive Alive’s knowl­edge, T&T does not have in­de­pen­dent trained crash in­ves­ti­ga­tors to analy­ses the types of ac­ci­dents like the one that oc­curred to­day.

“How­ev­er, we have faith that the TTPS will fol­low the nec­es­sary pro­ce­dures and con­duct a thor­ough in­ves­ti­ga­tion to the best of their abil­i­ty, in­clud­ing breathalysing the dri­ver, and ex­am­ine all the cam­eras in the vicin­i­ty of this fa­tal col­li­sion,” In­gle­field said.

Brown was al­so an avid sports en­thu­si­ast. Apart from cy­cling with the Slip¬stream Cy¬cling Club, he played rug­by with North­erns.

Ex­ec­u­tive chef at Bu­zo Os­te­ria Ital­iana, Cris­t­ian Gri­ni, al­so paid trib­ute to Brown.

“Trinidad & To­ba­go just lost a piece of their culi­nary heart, the main pil­lar of our in­dus­try and tru­ly an Icon­ic Mas­ter!” Gri­ni wrote in an on­line post ho­n­our­ing his friend.

“...and from me ...Chef, I have no words, I am sure you read­ing this as you can read each one of the mes­sages in the whole coun­try right now, I am speech­less, my heart is bro­ken, I feel the pain of each one of your fam­i­ly mem­bers in­clud­ed your Jaf­fa’s fam­i­ly....be­cause we both know how we feel about our team, they are our fam­i­ly, they are US, no mat­ter how hard we are on them is all about pas­sion and we deeply care and love them, we will be there for each one of them in time of need, count in all of us in the in­dus­try Chef, we will make sure they’ll have our sup­port.”

He added: “Our flags are down to­day and our knifes are sharp-less! Take care Joe, I am sure we’ll meet again one day! Rip Chef.”

Brown and Banks, a man­ag­er at bpTT, were killed af­ter a car ploughed in­to them op­po­site the Beetham Land­fill as they were head­ing east along the high­way. They were part of a 14-mem­ber Slip­stream Cy­cling Club team on their usu­al Sat­ur­day morn­ing train­ing ride to east Trinidad, af­ter leav­ing the Queen’s Park Oval around 6.15 am. Banks died at the scene while Brown was pro­nounced dead on ar­rival at the Er­ic Williams Med­ical Sci­ences Com­plex in Mt Hope.

Beetham res­i­dents who came out to as­sist the crash vic­tims did not ini­tial­ly see Banks be­cause she fell in a ditch full of wa­ter and over­grown with tall grass. In fact, her team­mates were giv­ing most of their at­ten­tion to Brown, who took the brunt of the im­pact from the col­li­sion, un­til some­one spot­ted Banks and two of her team­mates pulled her out of the ditch. It is not cer­tain if Banks died from in­juries sus­tained in the col­li­sion or drowned. Brown’s body was car­ried for sev­er­al me­tres by the out-of-con­trol Kia Spec­tra be­fore it ran in­to a wall at the side of the road­way and stopped.

Dri­ver Ju­nior McIn­tyre told po­lice he got a flat tyre, caus­ing him to lose con­trol of the car and run off the road­way in­to the cy­clists. One of the cy­clists said he heard a screech­ing noise be­fore the car hit the group and tossed many of them in­to the near­by ditch.

Dr Ajit Ku­ruvil­la and Adeli­no Per­reira were al­so tak­en to hos­pi­tal with non-life threat­en­ing in­juries.

More on this sto­ry as in­for­ma­tion comes to hand.

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