David Grimmond: Still going strong at 104

David Grimmond is a shadow of what he was just ten years ago but at the very ripe old age of one hundred and four he still moves around, sits up straight, has his eyesight and can respond to questions – that is, if you shout as his hearing has deteriorated over the years.

He remembers that he was born on November 8 and that he will be 105 this year but that is about it as he now can no longer remember his wife’s name or the names of his children. His daughter Rose said her dad’s memory had sadly left him in recent years and just about ten years ago he could have been referred to as a “good history book.”

Avril and David Grimmond
Avril and David Grimmond

He grew up right opposite Fort Nassau which was once the headquarters of the Dutch in Berbice, and was among the places which the revolutionaries controlled during the Berbice uprising 250 years ago. Rose said he would tell stories of seeing the remnants of a “Dutch” ship that had sunk at the location before it was eventually removed.

David and his wife Avril now spend their time sitting; he looks at the river flowing by while she maybe listens to the chirping of the birds since she has lost her eyesight. At 85 Avril Grimmond is still very lucid and she told the Sunday Stabroek that she listens to the news and at times would attempt to explain what she has heard on the radio to her husband, although she admits that it is a very difficult process.

“Sometimes he say he don’t understand and I have to start back from the beginning again,” she said with a small laugh.

For years she has been known for her ready laughter which she still displays.  The couple have been married for some 65 years and the union produced four daughters, although both had a son each before they met.

When the Sunday Stabroek arrived at the couple’s Fort Nassau home David Grimmond was in bed in a state of undress and his daughter indicated that it might be difficult to speak to him then. But on hearing that someone was there to speak to him – it certainly would break the monotony of his days – he insisted that he get dressed to meet the person.
He then left his bed and refusing the offer of assistance from his grandson, walked to his Berbice chair, where he sat upright throughout the brief conversation.
Asked how he was doing he responded, “A deh.” He then said he really does not have anyone to speak to and when it was suggested that he could speak to his wife he countered, “We does hardly talk, wah we get to talk?”

It was at this point his wife, who was in her bedroom at the time, joined the conversation and while he could not remember her name or how long they had been married she quickly provided the information.

Asked what sort of work he did in his early days Cousin David, as he is called by many, said that he did “all sorts of work, work all about, can’t remember now.”
According to his wife he farmed, worked at a dispenser and on a cattle ranch, among other jobs, and as she put it, he “had a lot of experiences in life.”

“I don’t like rice but I have to eat it,” Cousin David said when he was asked what he liked to eat, adding that he prefers plantain and eddo. And he still has ‘spunk’ which he displayed when this newspaper’s photographer approached him and informed him that he was a photographer but provided no other information.

“You is the photographer so what you want me to do?” quipped Cousin David much to the surprise of the photographer and others who were around.

The couple’s daughter Rose said she has the sole responsibility of taking care of her parents and she admits that it is a task which sometimes can be beyond her, although she quickly added with a smile that she “tries” her best.

Cousin David may or may not be the oldest resident of the Berbice River, but if not, there can be few others older than he.

Latest in Local News

default placeholder

Proposed law bans smoking in public places

Proposed tobacco control legislation will see a ban on smoking in public places while cigarette advertising will no longer be allowed and pictorial and text health warnings will have to be displayed on at least 75% of the packaging on tobacco products.

default placeholder

$800M in specialty hospital steel ‘awarded’ to BK

Government needs to explain why about $800 million worth of steel and other equipment that were earmarked for the now-frozen specialty hospital project, went solely to businessman Brian Tiwarie, former President Donald Ramotar says.

Ezekiel Murray

Truck driver jailed for three years for crash causing child’s death

Clyde Barker, the truck driver who was accused of running over 12-year-old Ezekiel Murray along the Friendship Public Road last year and causing his death, was yesterday sentenced to 3 years imprisonment.

default placeholder

Businessman jailed and fined over gun, ammo possession

A businessman was yesterday sentenced to two years imprisonment and fined $100,000 after being found guilty of illegal possession of a firearm and ammunition.

default placeholder

Business minister ‘in denial’ over economic ‘crisis’

Opposition Leader Bharrat Jagdeo yesterday said that Minister of Business Dominic Gaskin is in denial about Guyana not being in an economic crisis.

Kevin Joshua

Man found guilty of disfiguring teen in acid attack

Kevin Joshua, who doused a schoolboy with acid and left him disfigured, was on Tuesday found guilty by a jury of inflicting grievous bodily harm on the youth.

default placeholder

Conflicting evidence by police sees man freed of gun, ammo charge

Accused earlier this year of having in his possession a .32 firearm and matching rounds Mark Calvan was yesterday found not guilty.


About these comments

The comments section is intended to provide a forum for reasoned and reasonable debate on the newspaper's content and is an extension of the newspaper and what it has become well known for over its history: accuracy, balance and fairness. We reserve the right to edit or delete comments which contain attacks on other users, slander, coarse language and profanity, and gratuitous and incendiary references to race and ethnicity.

Stay updated! Follow Stabroek News on Facebook or Twitter.

Get the day's headlines from SN in your inbox every morning: