The mother of a Chefette employee, who collapsed and died on her way to work late last week, says she is having a hard time dealing with the blow.
A distraught Inez Atherley told Barbados TODAY yesterday news of Carline Carmeta Eastmond-Maynard was still proving very hard for the family to swallow. In fact, they said they were only “holding up after the beloved 41-year-old woman collapsed and died on a bus that was taking her from her Joe’s River, St Joseph home to her place of work on Marhill Street, The City last Friday morning. Reports are that when the bus stopped, the driver realized that the late Chefette employee was not making any attempt to disembark.
That’s when, he went over and tapped the mother of a 23-year-old Kayann and a 12-year-old Shackeem before she slumped over.
A soft-spoken Atherley said she was sitting at home when she got the tragic news.
“The phone rang and I get up and answer the phone and it was the manager from Marhill Street branch that tell me my daughter was on the way to work and she passed out in the bus,” she recalled.
So shaken up was she by the report, the mother said initially, she couldn’t remember her granddaughter’s name.
“So [Kayann] was here, but instead of calling her name, I was calling [Carline’s] name,” she told Barbados TODAY, recalling how she was overcome with tears.
Eventually, she would muster enough courage to tell her granddaughter the unwelcomed news that “yuh mother tek sick in de bus and she waiting for the ambulance to guh to the hospital”.
Immediately, Carline’s daughter sprang into action as she decided to make her way to the Queen Elizabeth Hospital, but by then, it would be too late.
“Shortly afterwards she [the granddaughter] called back and said she gone,” the grieving mother lamented.
“It was good luck that my son was here to take the call,” Atherley said, admitting that her daughter’s death came as “a real blow”.
She pointed out that when Carline left for work that fateful Friday morning, she had not uttered a single health complaint.
However, Atherley recalled that two days prior, her now deceased daughter had complained of feeling unwell.
“Wednesday morning she tell me that when she come in Tuesday night, she couldn’t come ‘cross by me because she didn’t feel good. She chest did hurting,” the mother said.
However, she recalled that her daughter had an eye appointment in Bellville,
St Michael that same morning and was due to meet up with her son, who had an orthodontist appointment later in the day.
“Hers did early the morning and his was one o’clock [in the afternoon]. So he had to go down and meet she. So they all went and come back. And she worked then, the Thursday,” the mother noted.
Still the thought of Carline’s death had not entered her mind.
Atherley said her daughter’s passing had also taken her Chefette colleagues by surprise. In fact, she said the Chefette manager who telephoned her had reported that when they were leaving on Thursday night, Carline was “talking and laughing”.
Therefore, her death “had them good”, the mother said.
Quietly sobbing as she struggled to come to terms with her family’s loss, Atherley described her daughter as a very pleasant person. She recalled that she would often remain awake at night to hear when her daughter arrived from work by bus, adding that Carline, who lived close by, would usually “come [and say] ‘mom, uh get home’ . . . when she could get out here”.
Atherley said the entire family would miss her, especially her macaroni pie and the fact that it would be “a big piece which everybody could share”.