Submitted by Shelly
It is now 3.33 am, Tuesday 29th March. I am unable to sleep because I am thinking deeply about a young soldier that died in the hands of the Barbados Guard who did not have to die so young and in the manner in which he did. On Friday morning, March 4, 2010, Ronald Harvey Butcher took ill while at Sea. The ship returned to base.
This young man remained at the Coast guard headquarters for the entire Friday and was pronounced drunk by the Coast Guard. This conclusion was reached because he was speaking incoherently, stuttering; wrenching with pain from an excruciating headache and vomiting, He was given drips intravenously and put to rest.
As time passed the condition of this young man became worse. Twenty four hours had elapsed before this young man was taken to the Queen Elizabeth hospital on the Saturday morning to get professional medical attention. When he was given a CT scan of his head doctors diagnosed that he had had an aneurism and he had massive bleeding to the brain. This young man lapsed into a coma and was place on life support. His heart continued to beat for ten days. He died on the 15th of March 2011.
My main concerns are:
- Are there certified medical practitioners at the Coast guard headquarters?
- Why did it take them 24 hours to transport that man to the QEH?
- Why was [sic] his mother informed about his illness as soon as the ship returned to the Coast Guard headquarters?
- Why did they assume he was drunk because he was speaking incoherently, did they perform a breathalyser test? If so What were the readings?
I know that their ineptitude cannot bring him back to his family again, but I trust that in future the Coast Guard officials will be more professional, humane and vigilant in their handling of all human beings in their care to ensure that no mother or family would experience the pain and suffering that Ronald’s mother and his family have experienced and continue to experience.