Sun | Mar 7, 2021

Tributes to Harry Maragh

Published:Tuesday | January 12, 2021 | 12:05 AM
Respected and admired: Harry Maragh (right) earned the respect and admiration of Caribbean leaders. With him are  Dr Ralph Gonsalves, prime minister of St Vincent and the Grenadines, and Corah-Ann Robertson Sylvester, then president of the Caribbean Shippi
Respected and admired: Harry Maragh (right) earned the respect and admiration of Caribbean leaders. With him are Dr Ralph Gonsalves, prime minister of St Vincent and the Grenadines, and Corah-Ann Robertson Sylvester, then president of the Caribbean Shipping Association (CSA), during a meeting of the CSA in St Vincent.

Corah-Ann Robertson Sylvester

Vice-president – The Shipping Association of Jamaica;

Past president – Caribbean Shipping Association

A humble dignified gentleman … a family man, a quiet leader, kind, caring, and unassuming powerhouse in the shipping industry.

I have known Harry for almost three decades. During that time, we have always had a competitive relationship as it relates to our businesses, but our professional and personal friendship was strong. Harry and I sat on the board of the Shipping Association of Jamaica, where we were always being reined in at the monthly meetings because of our sidebar conversations and constant laughter.

A man for the people, Harry was a great advocate for the workers on the port, leading many meetings that fought for the benefits of the port workers. Up until his passing, Harry was the chairman of the Port Workers Superannuation Fund.

Harry’s many interests in the logistics, transportation, cruise, cargo, and bulk aspects of the shipping industry in Jamaica and the region are a testament to his dedication to what he loved. He was a regular feature at the Caribbean Shipping Association conferences and was always defending the region’s position on various matters from the floor. With his passion, he ensured that shipping remained strong and competitive in the region and able to hold its own in the worldwide industry.

In recent years, Harry became a farmer, and at our last meeting together in December 2020 he was quite animated and proud about his latest crops, especially his grapes.

Walk good my friend, Harry!

May his soul rest in peace.

Roland Malins-Smith,

International shipping consultant

Former owner of Seafreight Line

Some of us don’t need to make a lot of noise to have a lasting impact.

Harry Maragh was a quiet, soft-spoken, unassuming man who cultivated friendship, allegiance and respect. He seldom raised his voice, but frequently smiled. He was thoughtful and persuasive, never argumentative. Strong in faith and loyal to his family, he was above all dedicated to service; service to his customers, his employees, his business colleagues, and his country.

The Harry Maragh I met in the 1980s was a sales and marketing representative at the shipping agency then owned by Vance Lannaman and Ainsley Morris. At that time, it was clear that Harry saw customer satisfaction, indeed the customer relationship, as the key to business success, and he never deviated from this principle as he climbed the corporate ladder, ultimately acquiring Lannaman & Morris Shipping Ltd and several other ventures. The personal touch garnered a loyal following in the industry, and grew over the years as he cultivated the same approach in his staff and associates.

Many of us know Harry from his shipping agency activities as well as his investments and directorships at the port of Kingston, his work with the Shipping Association of Jamaica, and his frequent attendance and occasional presentations at the Caribbean Shipping Association. But many of you may not know of Harry as a Caribbean vessel operator, chairman of Seafreight Line, ‘captain’ of a container line which managed seven ships with weekly calls at 20 ports. This activity provided our closest collaboration over our 35-year friendship.

Not too many of us in the industry have the opportunity to view the action from the perspectives of vessel operator, port terminal operator and port agent. His insight into the mutual support mechanisms and their impact on the customer experience were consequently invaluable to us in operating a Caribbean container service.

His interaction and guidance on the board of Seafreight encompassed every aspect of the line’s operation over several years, including the selection and chartering of ships for the service, trans-shipment and vessel-sharing agreements with other carriers, the financing and purchasing of containers, annual budgeting and scheduling options, and ultimately, the negotiation of the sale of the company five years ago. Harry was the consummate Caribbean shipping executive, for which service, risk management and exquisite timing were carefully interwoven.

Harry was especially preoccupied with intra-Caribbean shipping, the frequency and reliability of the sailings for the Jamaican manufacturer to the Eastern Caribbean, for the rice and fish importers from the Guianas, for the Far East container trans-shipments over Kingston to the wider Caribbean. Harry understood the commercial value of regional trade and integration, and the critical importance of regional shipping to Caribbean economic development.

Those of us who love the shipping industry are consumed with securing its future, and this was especially so with Harry. He was generous with his time and resources in support of maritime training in the Caribbean in general, and of the Caribbean Maritime Institute (now university) in particular. Harry mentored a generation of young people in the industry and was, to them and to his colleagues, a shining example of dedication, enthusiasm and integrity.

I feel blessed to have known this man as a business associate and loyal friend. May his soul rest in peace.

The Shipping Association of Trinidad & Tobago

Harry’s relationship with the members of the Shipping Association of Trinidad & Tobago spans over 25 years. He possessed a disarming personality that immediately endeared people to him. He was also an astute listener who made certain to carefully analyse persons and situations before making a decision. These traits made him immensely successful in business. He cared deeply for his staff and this was, in turn, reflected in the level of affection they showed towards him.

He was also very a humble and quiet individual, but he had a mind that was always working out things ahead of time. A perfect example is Lannaman and Morris. He acquired the company and moved it upwards rapidly. At meetings, he never minced words, and always stuck to a topic ,not asking frivolous questions. One never thought of Harry as having fun, but some of us remember him in Guyana on Baganara Island playing cricket and having a great time with the younger members. Harry will always be remembered not only for his sterling contributions from the floor of CSA meetings, but also for his great service and presence at SAJ. Indeed, his term of office at SAJ moved SAJ to being a leading association in the region.

Harry mixed very comfortably with all levels of people we met at CSA meetings over the years, his wife Charmaine at his side and later on, his daughter Racquel. We will miss him and his very down-to-earth approach. To Charmaine and the family, we pray for your strength and the Lord’s guidance at this difficult time.

David Harding

Past president of the Shipping Association of Barbados and the Caribbean Shipping Association

The Shipping Association of Barbados received with great sadness the news of the untimely passing of a stalwart, a friend and an accomplished Caribbean man.

As a past president of both the Shipping Association of Barbados and the Caribbean Shipping Association, it is my honour to say a few words on behalf of the Caribbean shipping fraternity.

I was introduced to Harry in the 1980s by Ainsley Morris of Lannaman & Morris and immediately felt a sincereness from the hand that shook mine.

Over the many years that followed, Harry showed his sincerity and much more ... his ability to work and plan behind the scenes, and his ability to bring like-thinking persons together for the improvement of the maritime industry.

With a solid business head on his shoulders, Harry always looked for opportunities to add to his business portfolio, with great success.

Above all, however, Harry was a family man ... and to his wife Charmaine and family, the Shipping Association of Barbados sends it sincere condolences. A titan in the shipping industry has left us.

With personal condolences from my wife Celia and myself.

Clarivette Diaz

Presidenta, Asociación de Navieros de Puerto Rico

The Puerto Rico Shipping Association mourns the passing of Harry Maragh, chairman of Lannaman & Morris Shipping, and unite to honour his name and legacy in the Caribbean shipping industry.

We will always remember his commitment, passion, and ideals of a modern maritime industry.

We assure you that the honourable legacy that Mr Maragh leaves behind offers inspiration to all of us within this industry.

The Puerto Rico Shipping Association would like to extend our sympathy and respect to the Maragh family and everyone at Lannaman & Morris Shipping in their time of mourning. We pray for comfort and relief of sorrow for everyone that had the privilege to know him.

The Shipping Association of the Dominican Republic

Harry Maragh was undoubtedly a great businessman. His active involvement in the Caribbean Shipping Association was memorable, and his legacy to the maritime industry of his country, and the entire region, can never be forgotten.

The Shipping Association of the Dominican Republic is very sorry for this loss.


Harry had a pure heart and a genuine care for the people around him. To know him was to love him. He was a man for the people and was always willing to listen to everybody, no matter where they were from. His wisdom and insight were second to none, and he has left his mark and his legacy. He is an icon that will truly be missed.

On behalf of the PROVEN Wealth team, we send our condolences to his family and friends, and we will keep them in our prayers.

Dido Suendermann

Operations and logistics manager - ZIM Integrated Shipping Services Ltd

We will always remember Harry for the person he was — a stalwart of the shipping industry in Jamaica and a friend.

Our deepest condolence and sympathy go out to his family.

Fernando Rivero

Past president and past general manager of the Caribbean Shipping Association

So sad the news. I had a lot of respect for him. He was an excellent person. My condolences to his lovely wife.

Hugo Bromet

Managing director – H. Bromet Shipping, Paramaribo, Surinam

It is with great sadness I was informed of the passing of our dear and trusted friend Harry Maragh.

Needless to say, it is a loss for the entire Caribbean Shipping community, for his wisdom and knowledge will be missed.

Always, he was the man to consult or to contact whenever there was a problem which had to be solved. He was also a steadfastly figure whenever we consulted him on very sensitive and important matters. As a good, personal friend of mine, I could always trust Harry whenever his touching advise was requested.

I always appreciated his openness, warmth and sincerity when visiting Jamaica. To his family and staff, I must express my deepest sympathy and condolences for this very good person Harry was. I hope that the entire Caribbean shipping community always remembers Harry as a good friend and great leader of the industry.