Awardees and guests spent this Friday evening and Saturday afternoon honouring the dedication and bravery of National Heroes Day awards recipients at Agape Family Worship Centre, George Town.
Friday’s Grand Cayman ceremony recognised 186 awardees on Grand Cayman from the Royal Cayman Islands Police Service (and Special Constabulary) and the Cayman Islands Coast Guard.
Saturday’s presentation recognised 220 awardees from the Cayman Islands Fire Service, CI Customs and Border Control (and Immigration & Customs legacy officers), Her Majesty’s Cayman Islands Prison Service, the CI Cadet Corps and the CI Regiment
Deputy Governor, Hon. Franz Manderson, MBE, Cert. Hon, JP; and Radio Cayman Director, Ms Norma McField, Cert. Hon., shared Master of Ceremonies duties at both ceremonies and kept the proceedings engaging for attendees and those tuning in.
The events included a colour party presentation of flags, the National Anthem, opening remarks by Minister for Home Affairs, Youth, Sports, Culture and Heritage, Hon. Bernie Bush, MP; and the keynote address by Premier, Hon. G. Wayne Panton, JP, MP.
During his opening remarks, Minister Bush said:
You are the heroes, who fearlessly keep us safe and ensure that we continue to enjoy the freedoms that our Beloved Isles provide. You protect our borders by land and by sea. You safeguard our property and shield us from harm.
Quiet, dependable and ever-present, we now turn and pay homage to the courageous men and women of our uniformed services.
In acknowledging the enormous debt of gratitude felt towards the recipients and their agencies, the Premier said:
We are here today to celebrate and honour you. You should know that your community stands behind you. Your passion and commitment continues to inspire younger generations to put on the uniforms and step up to serve their country.
I am certain that many of you can recall an experience or interaction with a member of the uniformed services that sparked your own interest in serving. And so it often is the case of a never-ending cycle of service and inspiring others to serve that makes Cayman a strong community.
Last weekend’s recipients from the Sister Islands were also recognised;
The two ceremonies, like the one in Cayman Brac, were invitation-only events due to current COVID-19 mask mandates and restrictions. Following the presentations hosted under this year’s theme: “Honouring Our Uniformed Services,” Mrs. Lisa Scott sung a special arrangement of ‘Beloved Isles Cayman’ at both Grand Cayman presentations.
2022 recipients were honoured under the following categories:
Early Pioneer – An individual alive or deceased, who has made an exceptional contribution, prior to 1971, to the development and/or delivery of Uniformed Services in the Cayman Islands,
Pioneer – An individual alive or deceased, who has made an exceptional contribution, between 1971 and 2011, to the development and/or delivery of Uniformed Services in the Cayman Islands,
Emerging Pioneer – An individual alive or deceased, who has made an exceptional contribution, from 2012 to 2021, to the development and/or delivery of Uniformed Services in the Cayman Islands.
Excellence and Valour – An individual, alive or deceased, who during their service has performed an extraordinary act of bravery and acted voluntarily and without regard for personal risk, exhibiting remarkable heroism under circumstances of extreme personal danger. This act(s) must have occurred in a moment of clear and obvious danger and was clearly above and beyond the call or risk of ordinary duty/sense of obligation,
Memorial Scroll – A deceased person who was a leader or notable contributor to the development and/or delivery of Uniformed Services in the Cayman Islands who lost their life in the line of duty or while serving as a member of the Uniformed Services and
Meritorious Contribution – In appreciation for exceptional contributions to the development and/or delivery of Uniformed Services in the Cayman Islands.
Next year’s National Heroes Day theme, as announced at the 24 January 2022 event, is “Volunteerism and Charitable Service.” Nominations from the public will open later this year.
Members of the public may watch a replay of Grand Cayman ceremonies below.