If 23-year-old Rico Wazir Reid had heeded the advice of some in the volatile Brittons Hill, St Michael community, he may still be alive today.
According to dad Roderick Reid, his son was given what would be a final warning, by certain residents there, not to attend Wednesday night’s pleasure cruise on board the Jolly Roger.
However, as fate would have it, Rico, who is the father of a four-month-old baby boy, would make his way to Wharf Road, The City just before midnight, only to end up dead.
The professional jockey would not make it on board the popular night cruiser. Instead, he would be permanently stopped in his tracks by an unknown assailant who shot him in his head as he was preparing to board the vessel. Rico died on the spot, the victim of another senseless murder – the eighth on police record for the year.
Today, the dreaded news of his death took many by shock, not least of all the mother of his son, who lived with him in Kingsland Terrace, Christ Church. When a Barbados TODAY visited their home this afternoon, a relative said the young woman was simply too distraught to speak.
Rico’s dad was also dumbstruck, especially since he had seen his “happy” and “healthy-looking” son mere hours before the tragedy occurred.
“I was coming home and he stop and give me a drop home. He was good, he was happy. I get out and come up the street. I ain’t know that he drive and went up the road to a cruise,” the grieving father said, still in disbelief over his son’s death.
Members of the local horseracing community also expressed surprise over the untimely demise of the jockey who was employed at the Barbados Turf Club.
However, there was at least one group of people to whom Rico’s death did not come as a complete shock.
His father revealed to Barbados TODAY that his son had been given prior warning by some residents of the Brittons Hill, which Rico frequented, not to attend last night’s Jolly Roger cruise since something very ugly was about to go down.
However, Roderick, said he still did not know why his son got the advice he did. He is also trying to figure out who would want to kill his beloved 23-year-old son; even though he had an explanation for why the former Arthur Smith Primary, and Princess Margaret Secondary student may have decided to take the cruise any way.
“I understand people tell he don’t go to the cruise. If you tell Rico don’t go somewhere he gine prove it, and he gine go, because he hard ears a kind of way. He got he own way,” his father said regrettably.
“I don’t know why he went because it was not a Brittons Hill cruise. It was somebody from the Bayland and somebody from St Philip [holding the cruise],” Roderick added.
Still, this is not the first time that trouble has come knocking on the Reid family’s door or that Rico has been involved in a shooting. However, this time, the 23-year-old, who recently got out of prison on bail on a shooting charge, found himself on the wrong end of the gun barrel.
“He should have [stayed] home. He should have gone home with the baby,” said Roderick, whose solemn wish right now is that his son would have listened to the sound advice.
While describing Rico as a loving person who possessed a strong passion for riding horses, the grieving father said his son also had the ability to perform just about any stunt on a motorbike.
Other relatives described Rico’s love for his son whom he adored as incomparable, which would also explain why Rico’s dad is also tearing up inside over his unfortunate passing.
Ever since Roderick got the tragic news in the wee hours of this morning, Roderick, who has three other children, said he has hardly been able to do anything for himself. In fact, Rico’s death has hit him like a very bad dream from which he is yet to wake up.
Unfortunately, there is no coming back for Rico after this horrible nightmare.