National Address by Prime Minister Dr. Hon. Timothy Harris on the passing of H.E. Vance W. Amory

Fellow citizens and residents of St. Kitts and Nevis:

It is with a sense of deep sadness and regret that I announce to the Nation the passing of His Excellency, Ambassador Vance Winkworth Amory, former Premier of Nevis and former Senior Minister in the Federal Cabinet of Ministers of our Team Unity Administration. Ambassador Amory transitioned into eternity today, Saturday, April 2, 2022 while surrounded by his wife, Vernita, his daughters and other close family members following a brief period of illness in the United Kingdom (UK).

Fellow Citizens and Residents:  the death of Ambassador Vance Amory signals the passing of a true patriot and Elder Statesman who made a positive and indelible mark on the development of St. Kitts and Nevis over the course of his life.  Born on May 22, 1949 in Rawlins Village, Gingerland, Nevis, Ambassador Amory led a full life that was punctuated by a number of key achievements and accomplishments, including the following:

  • Scholar;
  • Educator;
  • Respected cricketer who performed well for the Combined Islands and Leeward Islands;
  • Staunch Anglican;
  • Astute Politician;
  • Founding Member and former leader of the Concerned Citizens Movement (CCM) of Nevis;
  • Premier of Nevis on two occasions, that is, between June 1992 and July 2006, and January 2013 to December 2017;
  • Founding Member of our Team Unity Movement; and
  • Senior Minister and Minister of Nevis Affairs, Labour, Social Security and Ecclesiastical Affairs in the Federal Government.

On a more personal level, Ambassador Amory became a true friend, mentor and advisor to me as we embarked on the journey of forming Team Unity, in order to provide you, the people of St. Kitts and Nevis, with the shared prosperity, strong leadership and good governance that you deserve, and was sadly lacking through successive Administrations.  With his invaluable partnership and support, Team Unity was established with the mandate of transcending the traditionally limiting political boundaries and tribalism that had held back the development of our Federation for decades.  As such, we owe it to Ambassador Amory’s memory to maintain the integrity and principles of the Team Unity movement to which he was fully committed from its inception, straight through to the historic launch in September 2013, and the general election victory – against all odds – in February 2015.

My life – and my journey as Prime Minister of St. Kitts and Nevis – have been enriched through Ambassador Amory’s wise counsel, solid friendship and steady temperament on which I had come to depend. I will miss him dearly but our loss is Heaven’s gain.

As I pondered the passing of Ambassador Amory, my mind goes back to the last few days he would have spent here before travelling to the UK to receive medical treatment.  I am happy that I would have been able to spend some time with him prior to his departure two weeks ago.  We would have remained in regular contact while he was in the UK.

As can be expected, Ambassador Amory will be accorded a State Funeral, the details of which will be communicated to the public in due course.  In consultation with His Excellency, the Governor General, Sir Tapley Seaton Q.C., an official period of mourning will be observed in the Federation. Meanwhile, flags in the Federation are to be flown at half-mast, in honour of Ambassador Amory’s passing.

On behalf of the Government and people of St. Kitts and Nevis, I officially extend heartfelt condolences to the family of Ambassador Amory, in particular, his wife, daughters, siblings and grandchildren – and to the people of Nevis.  May God’s Holy Spirit comfort you at this time of deep sorrow, grief and loss.

May the soul of our former Premier, Senior Minister and Elder Statesman, His Excellency Ambassador Vance Winkworth Amory rest in eternal peace.

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