BENJAMIN Durant, Guyana’s oldest surviving war veteran, celebrated his 102nd birth anniversary on Sunday, November 15 among his family at their Goedverwagting, East Coast Demerara (ECD) home.
On his birth anniversary, Durant was visited by Prime Minister, Brigadier (ret’d) Mark Phillips. According to the Department of Public Information (DPI), the Prime Minister wished the centenarian good health, strength and happiness, and expressed his gratitude towards the man for his service. The ex-serviceman shared stories of his long life during a conversation.
The Prime Minister said he was both humbled and inspired by these stories, and highlighted that he was amazed at Mr. Durant’s alertness and ability to still recall in much detail, events that occurred so long ago.
At the time of the visit, Mr. Durant was surrounded by his family, including his wife and two of his children. He was presented with two large hampers, consisting primarily of dietary items.
The visit comes on the heels of the Prime Minister pledging $500,000 to the Guyana Veterans Legion (GVL), when he joined President Irfaan Ali and ranks of the Guyana Defence Force (GDF) on November 13 in a wreath-laying ceremony at the Veteran’s Monument, on the front lawn of the GDF’s Base Camp Ayanganna.
The ceremony was in memory of the men and women who served in Guyana’s military forces pre-and-post-independence. The President also made a monetary donation to the GVL.