(JAMAICA OBSERVER) – Tremayne Brown, the man hailed as a hero after he saved a boy from drowning Friday evening, said he was taught how to care for people at age seven by family friend Fay Chung.
Chung became Brown’s foster parent after his father was deported from the United Kingdom.
“She still speak to me up to this day. It was really her who gave me the moral to think about other people and not just myself. She thought me how to have respect for other people [and] don’t be selfish… and that is why when I saw him in the gully the first thing was to help him, nothing else,” the 24-year-old Brown told the Jamaica Observer yesterday after he was offered a job by Lasco in their promotions department.
When the Observer visited First Street in Trench Town after 2:00 pm yesterday, motor vehicles lined the street in the vicinity of Trench Town Culture Yard as residents, representatives from Lasco representatives, telecommunications firm FLOW, and the media awaited Brown’s arrival.
An hour later Brown arrived along with his father Stanford, pastor for a community church. The elder Brown then escorted people who were awaiting the arrival of his son through a narrow passage to his church, located at the back of a tenement yard, where his son was offered the job by Lasco and a bag with goodies, while FLOW presented him with a Samsung J2 Prime cellular phone and other products for his heroic act.
Brown, who was seemingly humbled by the praises heaped on him, did not hesitate to speak about his life prior to his deportation from the United Kingdom.
He said at the time of his father’s deportation he was a student at Twydall Primary School, Nursery and Children’s Centre.
After primary school, despite his father’s absence, he said he transitioned to Carshalton Boys High School where he obtained eight subjects. He went on to obtain a level II diploma in health and social care at Carshalton College.
“I always like working with elderly and young people. I was an “overstayer” (illegal resident) and was not allowed to work, and I was not allowed to claim benefits,” Brown said.
As if his father’s deportation was not enough, Brown said his mother was killed in Spanish Town, St Catherine, six years ago.
Brown, who is the father of a four-year-old boy, said that after he, too, was deported it was not difficult for him to adjust to a “third world” country after living in London for more than 17 years.
“I am easily adaptable; I can adapt to anything. I don’t stress about nothing. If I have to live that way, I will live that way,” Brown said, adding that everything happens for a reason.
The Observer was told that earlier yesterday the Trench Town hero was taken to the Ministry of National Security and the Ministry of Industry, Commerce, Agriculture, and Fisheries where he was congratulated and offered assistance. It was not clear, however, what type of assistance was offered.
Last Friday, Renaldo Reynolds, 12, was on his way home from Jones Town Primary School during heavy rain when he was encouraged by a group of older boys in the vicinity of Seventh Street to jump into a gully on Collie Smith Drive. He did, but in his attempt to climb out slipped and was washed away.
Brown, a labourer, was on a work site at Boys’ Town Community Centre when he heard residents screaming for help. On learning that a child was being washed away in the gully in the vicinity of Seventh Street, Brown, within seconds, jumped into the raging water and held on to Renaldo, otherwise know as Didda, whom he had never met.
They were both swept away by the raging water but Brown, who clutched Renaldo, managed to hold on to the branch of a tree that prevented them from being washed further down the gully. They were eventually helped from the gully and taken to Kingston Public Hospital where they were treated for cuts and bruises. Renaldo was admitted overnight, while Brown was released.