Scores of relatives and friends packed the Holy Trinity Anglican Church, spilling over into two tents at the western end of the place of worship, as they gathered to bid farewell to former Deputy Governor of the Central Bank of Barbados and economic advisor to former Prime Minister Owen Arthur, Carlos Holder, who died on February 20, aged 66.
Heading the list of dignitaries attending the funeral and burial at the Holy Trinity Church in St Philip were Arthur, Opposition Leader Mia Mottley, former Opposition Leader Dr Clyde Mascoll, former Cabinet ministers Anthony Wood and Rudolph “Cappy” Greenidge, and several practising and retired economists.
In his tribute to Holder, Arthur described him “as a case of understated excellence”, having risen from very humble circumstances in the eastern parish of St Philip.
The former Prime Minister said Holder had such “a humble and unpretentious manner, that it was easy for many not to be aware of the great things he accomplished and the massive contribution he has made in so many ways through sincere service”.
Suggesting that historians should be kind to the late economist who also held senior positions at the Caribbean Development Bank, Arthur said: “I ask only that when the history of these times comes to be properly written, he should be remembered as one of those who made an invaluable contribution to Barbados’ development in a manner that made a decisive difference at a critical and decisive time.”
Arthur recalled that Holder had answered the call to duty in 1994 when he had asked the representative of the International Monetary Fund to leave Barbados, and also at that time when the World Bank had decided to stop lending money to Barbados.
Stressing the social origin of the team of economists he had put together to take the country forward, Arthur said: “We were on our own, but we felt that it was our time. For the economic team that was assembled to take Barbados forward were the children of carpenters and labourers, postmen and tailors, maids and folks who worked in factories and the fields and who knew what it was to struggle to make ends meet.”
The St Peter MP said “this band of brothers and sisters were united by their determination to do all in our power to ensure that Barbados did not fail”.
Tributes were also paid by senior officials of the Insurance Corporation Barbados Ltd, Capita Financial and Codrington Trust, where Holder served on the boards of directors.
Holder’s mortal remains were interred in the churchyard.