ST. PHILIP, Barbados (Thursday, November 12, 2020) — There was jubilation and warm smiles everywhere, when Arminta Harrison became this island’s newest centenarian.
Governor General, Dame Sandra Mason, joined family members, via Skype, during the celebrations at the residence of Harrison’s daughter, Fenella Callender, at Kirtons Main Road, in St. Philip, last week.
Dame Sandra congratulated the “birthday girl”, who was immaculately bedecked in a peach, lace dress, accentuated with an elegant white church hat. In response, Harrison said: “I feel good…I feel happy to know that I am yet alive, because of God, and I am thankful.”
Born in Diamond Valley, but currently residing at Pounder’s Road, in St. Philip, with daughter, Pamela Gittens, Harrison was educated at the nearby Beulah Girls’ School. On leaving school, she worked at Grove Plantation, as a labourer, until retirement.
The sprightly centenarian met and later wed her sweetheart, James (now deceased), in 1965. The union produced eight children, three of whom are deceased. She also has 15 grand-children, 17 great-grandchildren, and six great-great grands.
Son, Guy Roach, who came into the island from Canada for the celebrations, credited his mother for bestowing principles that followed him and his siblings throughout adulthood.
“She encouraged us to establish a community of family and friends that would uplift us and point out to us, when we are right, or wrong.
“The second most important part is our faith in Christ, and in Christ alone. She taught us to spend some time worshipping and developing our Christian faith. My mother also encouraged us to educate ourselves and our families, to respect all persons and [be humble],” he underlined.
A devout worshipper of the Church of the Nazarene in the Crane, Harrison has a passion for singing and whistling – the latter talent she demonstrated for the Governor General, much to the delight of the gathering. She also likes to cook and bake and readily shares her goodies with others.