ON a Tuesday afternoon filled with roiling emotions for his parents, siblings, relatives, friends and colleagues, fallen Police Constable Ledon Aaron, 25, of Lot 338 Track “A”, Coldingen, East Coast Demerara, was laid to rest after a funeral that featured an impressive military display by ranks of
the Guyana Police Force for their fallen comrade who, along with Constable Marlon Letlow, was killed in the line of duty last week in Region 8 (Potaro/Siparuni).
Although Constable Aaron’s body lay in the lobby of the Newburg Funeral Home in Norton Street, Georgetown for approximately one and a half hours of viewing had not been possible because of the onset of decomposition. This publication was told that the body of the young man had to be wrapped in a plastic sheet before being placed in the coffin.
At the funeral home, several persons broke down emotionally and cried uncontrollably, unable to contain their emotions; while many others just stood staring glumly at the casket bearing Aaron’s body. Tears were evident everywhere, in some cases trickling down faces hiding behind dark sunglasses.
From the parlour the body was taken to the World Vision Tabernacle on David Street, Kitty, uncorking the emotions of those gathered there who were trying to contain themselves. As the casket was taken out of the hearse, persons overcome with grief, together with the usual set of curious persons, had to be restrained, as they besieged the casket in an obvious effort to get a last glimpse of the fallen constable.
Loud, heart-rending wails and rumblings could be heard coming from the upper flat of the church building, where persons had gathered for Aaron’s home going service.
Many persons bawled, wailed, cried and wept openly, while others were observed wiping away tears from their eyes.
Constable Aaron’s funeral service was conducted by Reverend Kwame Gilbert.
At one point in the proceedings, Aaron’s mother, no longer able to contain her emotions, began wailing loudly, asking why her son had to be the one to die. The woman related how she had cared for her children, and had ensured that they all grew up to be assets to society, even as she continued crying over her son’s casket.
It took almost four persons to restrain the woman from upturning her son’s casket.
Following the funeral service, which lasted for almost two hours, the body was taken out of the church back to the hearse, as police officers fully decked in ceremonial uniform stood at attention, paying their respects to a fallen colleague. As the casket was placed into the hearse, the ranks performed a mini march parade, lining up vehicles to proceed to Aaron’s final resting place at Friendship.
The cortege proceeded towards Friendship Cemetery on the East Coast Demerara, travelling under police escort from David Street, Kitty into Sheriff Street then the Rupert Craig Highway.
At Buxton, ranks of the Guyana Police Force Band Corps staged the significant parade in honour of their fallen colleague, Constable Ledon Aaron. Traffic along the East Coast Highway at Buxton had to be diverted from the main carriageway, and persons unwilling to divert were forced to wait until the procession turned off the highway and into the access road to the burial ground.
The ceremonial parade had in attendance the drums, saxophone, trumpets and other musical instruments of the Guyana Police Force Band Corps, and armed guards made up part of the procession. Sentries were in evidence throughout the procession, in keeping with the honours accorded to fallen colleagues who had served the Guyana Police Force.
The impressive parade and sharp, melodious sounds of the instruments added to the spectacle of the funeral, bringing out the community to line the streets to view the proceedings.
When the Band Corps made it’s way into the Friendship Burial Ground, the wailing of mourners intensified sharply, and Aaron’s mother again had to be both consoled and restrained from entering the ground. Her wails of anguish and grief created a maelstrom of reactions, as other family members and friends, who until then had been valiantly trying to compose themselves, eventually surrendered to their grief.
Constable Ledon Aaron’s funeral was attended by police officers bearing the rank from Commander (of E and F Division) to Senior Superintendent (attached to the Welfare Department) to sergeant, to corporal, to lance corporal, to constable; and all were noticeably saddened by the young constable’s passing.
When Constable Aaron was finally laid to rest, the pallbearers, his colleagues, maneuvered, hopped and skipped between several tombs to get the body to the tomb which was constructed for him.
The Guyana Police Force Band sang several home-going hymns at the grave side, and this episode was followed by the reading of the final prayer by Reverend Kwame Gilbert, before the sounding of two gun salutes, much to the wonder and fascination of the hundreds who had gathered to participate in the final farewell.
On Wednesday, October 18, the bodies of Constables Aaron and Letlow were discovered some distance from each other at Karisparu Village in Region 8. Each had gunshot wounds. The upper portion of Aaron’s body had been burnt, and he had sustained several gunshot injuries to his back, head and chest. Both men had been killed by multiple gunshot wounds.
It is widely believed that the police ranks had been murdered because they had been in the wrong place at the wrong time.
The firearm that Letlow had been carrying was recovered, while the one used by Aaron has not yet been found.
Acting Police Commissioner Leroy Brumell dispelled claims that the men had been involved in any wrongdoing prior to their deaths. At that time, he had said that the investigating ranks who had travelled to the area after the bodies had been discovered had been unable to acquire any credible information to substantiate robbery allegations.