Mom of murdered cop: ‘I hold no bitterness’

The content originally appeared on: Trinidad and Tobago Newsday

DALE’S LAST RIDE: The casket of bearing the body of drag race enthusiast PC Dale Mayers was carried alongside his race car before his funeral at the Arima Seventh-Day Adventist Church, De Gannes Street, Arima on Monday. – Faith Ayoung

The mother of murdered police officer Dale Mayers says she holds no bitterness towards anyone nor does she question God about anything. She said she had placed her trust in God and she felt honoured he chose her to be Mayers’ mother.

Speaking at her son’s funeral, Angela Mayers told the hundreds of mourners who showed up to the Arima Seventh Day Adventist church on De Gannes Street to celebrate his life that she was comforted by knowing her son was able to touch so many lives.

“The number of people who came to see me, who cried, and as I held them, I carried each one of their pain. I pray for you.

“My son was sent on a mission far greater than I ever imagined. His mission was to unite people. As I look around, I see people of all nationalities, colour, religion.”

On May 13, Mayers was liming at a bar in Longdenville, Chaguanas with two friends when a gunman walked in.

The gunman announced a hold-up and Mayers drew his licensed firearm and shot at the man. The man returned fire, hitting Mayers. He was taken to hospital, where he died while being treated.

The gunman was held that night after going to the Port of Spain General Hospital for treatment.

On Monday, at his funeral, Mayers’ mother urged mourners to remember each other and live in love so her son’s legacy could live on.

“I will call him by his garage, and sometimes he would be blasting Indian music while he worked. He loved people.”

She shared memories of her son and called on his male friends to step up.

“Please, men, assume your duties; his children need you now to help guide them.”

Dale Mayers –

She told the packed church that if ever they see her, “come for a hug,“ that she is “Dale Mummy,” and ended by telling the weeping mourners she loved them all.

Mayers’ younger sister, Danisha Dana Mayers-Gardner, delivered an emotional eulogy beginning with his early years, saying he was born at eight months, weighing four pounds and two ounces. She said her earliest memory of her brother was of them swinging on a mango tree at the back of their house.

She said Mayers, a car enthusiast who competed in drag race competitions locally and internationally, had fallen in love with cars from a young age.

“It was almost like he was born with the ability to fix, build, and race anything.”

Mayers-Gardner said her brother made everyone feel special and she was pleasantly shocked when she visited his home the night after the deadly shooting and saw many people sharing their own heartwarming stories.

“I felt genuine love. Dale’s real gift was finding ways to create memorable moments and impactful relationships across every religion, every creed, every race, every age, both genders, every profession, every social class, every country. That was his real superpower.”

As Mayers-Gardners became emotional, she ended by saying she and her family would now have to face the painful task of figuring out a world without him.

“I ask that you keep us in your prayers. Thank you, everyone, for allowing Dale to be the beacon of light he was intended to be. And please continue to all strive to be the best versions of yourselves.”

Four of Mayers’ seven children spoke together, fighting back tears. They urged mourners to live in love and mend relationships before the unexpected happens.

They described their father as never being the type to showcase his emotions, but they never questioned his love for them.

“He could show all the tough love that he wanted. But we knew. And when we called, he would always answer.”

They said Mayers lived a full life and he never failed to make them laugh or smile with pride at his achievements. They said he lived for the adrenaline rush and craved cars, motorcycles, boats, and even helicopters. Mayers owned a helicopter that he was in the process of rebuilding.

HEARTBREAK: A relative of slain police officer Dale Mayers weeps as she holds on to one of his race cars while leaving his funeral at the Arima Seventh-Day Adventist Church, De Gannes Street, Arima on Monday. – Faith Ayoung

“He planted a love for speed in each of us, along with character traits that allow him to live through us,” one of his daughters said.

She described last Monday’s shooting as a nightmare.

Deputy Commissioner of Police Suzette Martin presented Mayers’ mother with a portrait of him as a token of appreciation for his hard work.

A senior officer described Mayers as honest, dedicated, responsible and self-motivated, saying he exhibited those qualities to “the highest degree.”

He said Mayers took pride in his job and was enthusiastic when performing any task given to him. He also took pride in assisting and mentoring those he supervised.

“He loved his family. He would often say that his family was his life. He will do anything for them.”

He thanked Mayers’ mother for nurturing and guiding him to be the man his colleagues came to love.

“He was an avid motorsport enthusiast. Being a professional race car driver, he represented our country both regionally and internationally, where he won several titles.”

He said the police are often called upon to make sacrifices daily and Mayers had done this exceptionally throughout his career, upholding the police motto, “To protect and serve with pride.”

He told mourners the best way to carry on Mayers’ memory is to act like he did by treating people fairly.

“To the family of the deceased, you have suffered a great and irreplaceable loss. On behalf of the TTPS, I pray that the Lord will console you and give you strength and courage.”

Arima mayor Balliram Maharaj, after offering his condolences to the bereaved family, urged mourners to support reinstated Police Commissioner Erla Harewood-Christopher. He said a year was not enough time to make an assessment of her performance.

“She has the experience; I’m not trying to sell her.”

As Mayers’ body was carried out of the church, mourners seated outside under a packed tent flocked to his casket for a final viewing. Members of the car racing association and bikers revved their engines, putting on one final “burn-out” in his honour.

Two of his beloved drag racing cars were mounted on trucks and escorted the glass carriage that held his body through Arima.

The procession caused gridlocked traffic in the borough, with the public pausing to view it.