Veteran masman Lionel Jagessar Snr dies at 74

The content originally appeared on: Trinidad and Tobago Newsday

In this January 2020 file photo, veteran masman Lionel Jagessar Snr irons a piece to apply to a costume at the mas camp in San Fernando.

Veteran masman Lionel Jagessar Snr has died at age 74.

The leader of the family band – Lionel Jagessar and Associates– Gransaul Street in San Fernando, died at his home on Saturday.

He had been a designer for over 40 years and was known for his skills in traditional Indian mas and fancy mas costumes.

He, his wife, bandleader Jagessar’s Rose Marie Kuru-Jagessar, and their son Lionel Jagessar Jr have won many titles for their contributions to the Carnival.

Sunday Newsday learnt that he had been feeling unwell for the past few days, although reports said he had been ailing since February.

Many people have been offering condolences to the bereaved family.

San Fernando Mayor Junia Regrello took to Facebook to remember the veteran.

“I have just returned from the home of Lionel Jagessar Snr, who passed peacefully this morning. Lio as he was fondly known, was a giant in his field. His passing has left a void in the Carnival fraternity that would be difficult to fill. Our city has lost a great one.”

“On behalf of the city of San Fernando l extend my heartfelt condolences to his dear wife Rose, Lionel Jnr and the rest of his family in their moment of grief. May he find eternal rest.”

San Fernando-based Carnival band Kalicharan Carnival also offered condolences via social media.

“We join the mas and culture fraternity of TT in mourning the loss of a mas icon; Lionel Jagessar Senior. Lionel will be fondly remembered as one of the most iconic designers of traditional Indian mas in San Fernando,” a Facebook post said on Saturday.

“Our condolences go out to his wife and his entire family and the entire Lionel Jagessar and Associates team.”