Family clings to the hope that strong-willed personality will help keep 9-y-o boy alive

September 26, 2019
Nine-year-old Kyle Richards
Family and community members search for nine-year-old Kyle Richards
Family and community members search for nine-year-old Kyle Richards.

Kyle Richards, the nine-year-old boy who was washed away by floodwaters in August Town on Wednesday, does not normally walk home from school. His grand-aunt, Joan Campbell, said that Kyle and other students use a shuttle bus that takes them from Hope Valley Experimental School to their homes in the evening.

Campbell said that the bus did not operate on Wednesday and so one of Kyle's aunt, took him along with her as she walked with two other children from the household. But before they could get to their Goldsmith Villa home, tragedy struck. Raging floodwaters swept Kyle into a gully and out of sight. A search-and-recovery effort has since been launched, but efforts to locate him have so far proven futile.

"We really a tek it hard. We a fret pon the mother because she not even cry. We a try fi beg har fi cry," Campbell said. She told THE STAR that Kyle's aunt fainted Wednesday night and had to be rushed to hospital.

Until late last night, scores of residents from the August Town community scoured the gully that leads to Hope River in search of Kyle. And this morning, a search party, which includes the boy's mother, headed to Harbour View, St Andrew, checking to see if the raging water had carried the boy that far downstream.

"We are a very close family," said Campbell as she tried to hold back tears. She described young Kyle as a very active and helpful boy who stops at nothing to complete his tasks.
"Him always want try to do things, nuh matter how hard it is," she said as the family hangs to the hope that his strong-willed personality will help keep him alive.



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