Mourning ‘true St Georgian’ Louis DeSilva
Louis “Red” DeSilva, a former Deputy Mayor of St George's, has died.
A veteran St George's cricketer and former president of the St George's Cricket Club, Mr DeSilva was elected as a councillor for the Corporation in 1991 before winning a post as alderman in 1997.
He later assumed the position of Deputy Mayor in 2003, but stepped down in 2005 to serve as Town Manager — a position he held until 2008.
Mayor Quinell Francis said: “We are deeply saddened by the news of the passing of Mr DeSilva. On behalf of the councillors and staff of the Corporation, I extend my heartfelt sympathies to his family and friends.”
Neil Paynter, president of the St George's Cricket Club, described Mr DeSilva as a “true St Georgian”.
“I served under him on his management team while he was president of the club,” he said. “I have nothing but fond memories of Red, both as a youth growing up and as an adult working with him.”
This morning Michael Dunkley joined the tributes to Mr DeSilva.
“Red DeSilva was truly a larger than life fixture of the East End community,” the Premier said.
“Whenever you encountered him, he always greeted you with a welcoming word. Through his service at the Corporation of St George's and his leadership and participation at the St George's Cricket Club, ‘Red' demonstrated his commitment and love for the people of the East End.
“On behalf of the Government, I wish to extend my heartfelt condolences to the family and friends of Louis DeSilva.
“He made such an impact in so many lives and he will truly be missed.”
Meanwhile Marc Bean, the leader of the opposition, hailed Mr DeSilva a man of high moral character.
“Mr DeSilva was a staunch PLP supporter and member, and throughout his life was very active in the St George's branch. Mr DeSilva was a community organiser, trailblazer, and a proud St. Georgian, and this only begins to describe a man that made a profound impact on the people he came in contact with.
“Mr DeSilva has always been one to be forthright, and of high moral character, which is something many of us came to value and appreciate alongside his many contributions to the community. From Mr DeSilva we could each learn lessons in character, fortitude and wisdom, and our thoughts and prayers remain with his friends and family as they reflect upon the meaningful life he led.”
Lovitta Foggo, MP for St David's, said Mr DeSilva was someone who made important contributions to the St George's community in his roles with the St George's Cricket Club and the Corporation of St George's.
“His work contributions ensured that the traditions held dear were passed along to the next generation,” she said.
“Red DeSilva was well liked and respected, and his departure from us will be a miss. It is not often in this life that one gets to share time with someone as sincere and direct as Red. He has left an indelible imprint in the hearts and minds of those who were fortunate to know him. His memories will be cherished.”
And Renee Ming, a PLP senator and St George's resident, said: “Louis ‘Red' DeSilva was a proud Bermudian a man who was not afraid to tell you what he was thinking. Forthright, kind, generous and fair are attributes I would use to describe Uncle Red. St George's mourns yet again as another soldier has fallen.
“Uncle Red, you have fought a good fight, you have finished the race, you have kept the faith. Aunt Sandra, Chelito, Chaka and the entire DeSilva family please accept my heartfelt condolence and sympathy on behalf myself, my family and the Bermuda Progressive Labour Party.”