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Mother needs help to relocate after son’s death

Published:Thursday | March 29, 2018 | 12:00 AMTamara Bailey/Gleaner Writer
Thompson-Roach's son, Joseph, was a promising high school student who died after falling ill recently.
Nicola Thompson-Roach

Newport, Manchester:

Strength and dignity are her clothing, and she laughs at the time to come. She opens her mouth with wisdom, and the teaching of kindness is on her tongue. She looks well to the ways of her household and does not eat the bread of idleness. Her children rise up and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praises her: "Many women have done excellently, but you surpass them all." ...Proverbs 31 :25-30

Approximately five years ago, Nicola Thompson-Roach travelled to Montego Bay to visit her mother. She returned home to find out that her husband, who was hypertensive, had passed in his sleep.

Fast-forward to 2018. Not yet fully recovered from the loss of her husband, Thompson-Roach lost her 13-year-old son the very same way after a day of feeling ill.

With a fear that she may also lose her daughter, who is now mentally and physically overwhelmed, having lost both father and brother, Thompson- Roach is seeking help to relocate into a home she can call her own.

Thompson-Roach said her son, Joseph Roach, left home the Monday morning for school, but returned home after feeling ill in the taxi.

"He told me he vomited in the taxi and messed up his shirt and didn't want to go to school. He came and lay on the bed beside me, because I, too, was feeling ill. He vomited twice for the remainder of the day, but I didn't think it was anything too serious."

Thompson-Roach, who works as a community health aide, said there was nothing she could think of that both she and her son consumed that would have made them sick.

"He did not wake up the following morning; he passed in his sleep. After realising that my son died, my body started shutting down. I started vomiting profusely and I went to the Mandeville Hospital. I wasn't getting through there, and an adoptive mother of mine came and said I would die if I stayed, and (so) she brought me over to Hargreaves."

Thompson-Roach said the doctor told her that if she had stayed a few more minutes she would have died as she had picked up a virus and she had the deadly gastroenteritis.

A church brother, who has a sanatorium, took Roach in and helped her for three weeks with her recovery process, but life as a single mother without her son is getting even harder.

"I have to be in and out with my daughter, who is eight, with her emotions. Sometimes I have to get a third person in the house so she can sleep. It was the three of us in the rented house and now it is just two, and she is finding it hard to come to grips."




Thompson-Roach buried her son on Sunday, March 25, and is learning how to start a routine without him.

"He wasn't a perfect child, but he was a good child; he didn't give me any trouble. Oftentimes I would come home and get my nice meal with crunchy steamed vegetables. We would go out on the road together to witness and I know people will miss him."

She continued, "Death is a must, but when it comes it is not easy to handle. But I think of seeing my son again, and that is what keeps me from falling into depression. My son was a blessing from God and an ardent Christian, and I believe there is something the Lord saved him from."

Thompson-Roach revealed that she received a piece of land in Blenheim in the parish and needs help to put up a structure so she can help her daughter normalise her life in a new environment.

To assist Nicola Thompson-Roach, call (876) 806-8366.