Mother begs for help after boulder kills son, injures daughters
While many persons are feeling the Christmas spirit, all Charmaine Newell feels is heartache.
More than a month after boulders crushed her son to death, severely injured her daughter, and destroyed her house, 30-year-old Newell is grappling to cope with her rough reality.
"My daughter just get discharged from hospital on Monday, and when she ask fi her bother, me have to tell her that him gone a foreign, although him bury since December 17," Newell said, noting that doctors have advised her to keep the frightful news until her daughter is well enough to handle it.
On November 11, following a period of heavy rains, boulders fell from a hill near Newell's house in Broadgate, St Mary, and landed on the structure, where her 12-year-old son, Raheem Davey, and her eight-year-old twin daughters, Shenelle and Jhenelle Brown, were watching TV.
Jhenelle escaped with minor bruises, but Shenelle sustained severe injuries. Raheem was killed on the spot.
"Shenelle has a cracked ankle and dislocated knee. She lost her big toe and the one beside it. She has head injuries. She has some spotting in the brain," Newell explained, adding that Shenelle's short-term memory has been impaired, causing her to ask the same questions repeatedly.
Currently, Newell owes $53,000 at the University Hospital of the West Indies, where Shenelle was first transferred. She is yet to learn the exact figure she owes at the Bustamante Hospital for Children, where Shenelle was admitted for several weeks.
The other twin, Jhenelle, has been psychologically marred by the ordeal, and is currently undergoing counselling.
"She is traumatised. Sometimes she cries saying, 'Mommy, me want me brother. Me want me sister'. I can't leave her alone," Newell said.
Newell is staying with her mother just a few metres from her destroyed house. She said government representatives have promised her a new house, but she is yet to get a timeline for when she will receive it.
In addition to a home, Newell hopes to secure a job. She attained her practical nursing diploma over two years ago, but all her job applications have gone unanswered. She believes moving closer to Kingston would improve her chances, as jobs are scarce is her community.
Despite her struggles, Newell said she tries to keep strong by praying.
"My son is gone, but if I go crazy or break down, who is going to take care of my daughters? No matter how many family members you have, nobody can give your children the love that you give them."
The twins' father, Romaine Brown, has launched a GoFundMe account entitled, 'This is to relocate my daughters.' Persons can also donate to Charmaine Newell's Jamaica National bank account number 209 423 1563 - Annotto Bay branch, or email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.