(GUYANA CHRONICLE) – PAST students of the Mackenzie High School (MHS) in Linden were distraught on Thursday, when news broke that former teacher at the institution, Quincy Cummings, had passed away in the United States from the coronavirus.
The school’s administration posted on Thursday: “The Mackenzie High School family has suffered an unexpected blow; a loss too great for us to accurately communicate our hurt. The administration expresses our condolence to the family and friends of the late Quincy Cummings, former Head of Department. Rest in peace champ!”
While at the region’s top institution, Cummings taught technical drawing, physical education and was also coach of the MHS basketball team. Scores of students remember him as being jovial, active and supportive of their aspirations.
They poured out their memories of the teacher, whom they had fond memories of, which they vowed they could never forget.
“Mr. Cummings will surely be missed. I remember Him teaching Three Opal like it was yesterday. He was both a serious and fun teacher; never a dull class with him. May his soul rest in peace,” Niomi Alsopp said.
Lourena Tishana stated: “I have such fond memories of this passionate teacher and mentor. This is so sad, but fortunately there is the wonderful hope of seeing him again soon and this makes me smile.”
For some others, it was even more personal. Shavin Greene said: “Much of what he did for them was very personal. Only a few of us really know what this man did for us. I am who I am because of this man, only reason I got into teaching and teach industrial technology.”
Keitheshia Parris said in a post: “Anybody from high school that knows me, knows that this news is almost as equivalent as losing a parent. AGAIN. RIP.”
One former student, Kobe Cort, reminisced on Cummings’ involvement in sport.
“I remember this man made us share a bottle of Aquamist water to a basketball team with 25 players and the moral behind it was, ‘if one team mate rejoicing, we all rejoicing’,” Cort said.
Cummings had led the team to compete in the National Schools Basketball Festival (NSBF) title on different occasions.
Devon London stated: “I still can’t believe… I learned so much from him as a young teacher. Still using a lot of his strategies, especially at CSEC level.”
Another colleague of the late teacher, Godwin Edwards said: “This evening I found myself in the same state of disbelief when I learnt of Quincy Cummings’ passing… this is so sad and I feel compelled not to face this stark reality. His kids! His wife! His aspirations! His Friends, His Former Students! This guy was such a happy soul. Always had something positive to say after busing me out for not keeping in contact as often as I should have. This American life has you so caught up, that you sometimes don’t find enough time for your close friends and relatives even though you have them in your heart and thoughts. This Covid-19 is like accidents, you see a person moments before and then you get the news of their demise. Condolences to his friends, relatives, and family. Sleep in Peace!”
Cummings also worked at the John F. Kennedy (JFK) Airport after migrating abroad and one friend, Mayche Webster, stated: “I saw Quincy last October at JFK Airport. He was full of energy and enthusiasm. He spoke about some of his plans that he was hoping to achieve. My condolences to his family, may you be comforted during this period of your grief.”
Cummings leaves several family members to morn including his wife, Judith Blair-Cummings, and children.
One of his daughters, Christina Cummings, posted to her Facebook page: “The LORD gives, and the LORD takes away. You are my dad and I will always be your ‘cookie’. This would never be able to sit right with us. I tried everything I could to help ease your pain, everything daddy but somehow it wasn’t enough… you loved and spoke with a high chest and proud heart about your children. Also, you did everything you can to make us happy. Thank you for everything you’ve done for all of us and I will make sure to share these memories with Joaquin. Maybe time will heal our souls but until then I want you to walk towards that bright white light. You’re at peace, you fought the good fight, you can rest now my father. Until we meet again, farewell Daddy.”