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JM | Oct 23, 2020

‘A tragedy’: Juliet Holness saddened by death of Shooter’s Hill man, missing teen following landslide

/ Our Today

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Sadness grips the rural St Andrew community of Shooter’s Hill after Romero Leechman (left) and his 15-year-old daughter were caught in a massive landslide that swept away their home on Friday. Leechman was later found by firefighters but later died, his daughter is still missing. (Photo: Facebook @JulietHolnessJA)

Member of Parliament for East Rural St Andrew, Juliet Holness has expressed her sadness at the passing of Romeo Leechman, who succumbed to injuries he sustained when his Shooter’s Hill home was swept up in a landslide on Friday morning (October 23).

In a statement on her official Facebook page, Holness said she extended heartfelt sympathies to Leechman’s family and friends, even as members of the Jamaica Fire Brigade and residents continue their search for his 15-year-old daughter, who is yet to be found after the house collapsed under tonnes of mud and rock around 7:00 am.

“Sadly this morning the heavy rainfall caused a landslide that swept away a father and daughter in their home,” the MP began.

Under the rubble of what used to be a warm, wooden house, Jamaica Fire Brigade personnel and Shooter’s Hill residents continue their search for Leechman’s missing 15-year-old daughter—hours after their home was swept away by a landslide. (Photo: Facebook @JulietHolnessJA)

“Unfortunately, Mr Romeo Leechman passed away in this terrible tragedy and his daughter is still missing. As firefighters contine the search for her, we are praying that she is found safe and I extend my deepest condolences to the family and friends of Mr Leechman,” Holness wrote.

Leechman, a 42-year-old labourer, also known as ‘Romney’, was at home with his daughter in Toby Gully when prolonged rainfall, associated with a low pressure trough just west of Jamaica, triggered a landslide.

Leechman and his daughter in happier time. (Photo: Facebook @JulietHolnessJA)

The Jamaica Fire Brigade was called and Leechman’s body was retrieved. 

The outer bands of the low pressure trough, which has drenched Jamaica, as well as sections of Cuba and the Cayman Islands for the last three days, has prompted a flash flood watch for low-lying areas until Saturday.

According to the Jamaica Meteorological Service, the trough will continue to produce periods of heavy showers and thunderstorms islandwide, as well as strong gusty winds over southern parishes until Sunday.

The search for Leechman’s missing daughter continues amid the downpour.

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