Tuesday, June 16, 2020

The Man Behind the Uniform

The little boy from Big Pond, who sold newspapers, used a hand pump in the yard to tote five gallon buckets of water and slept on the floor with his grandmother, is now the eight commander of the Royal Bahamas Defence Force.

RBDF Commander, Commodore Raymond King

By Hadassah Deleveaux (née Hall)

I knew from very early into our conversation that I was being given an unfettered, privileged access to the man who holds the highest rank of the organization responsible for protecting our borders. The interview was not so much about his recent appointment as Commander of the Royal Bahamas Defence Force (RBDF); it was more about the man behind the uniform.

What I didn’t expect was that he would be so candid.

During my visit, I learned that Commodore Raymond King had no flowery bed of ease growing up. His life has been marked with struggles, from selling newspapers to provide the necessities of life, using the hand pump in the yard to tote five gallon buckets of water and sleeping on the floor of a two-bedroom house – which at one point housed 24 people – to having to deal with the naysayers when he began to climb the ranks of the force.

“A person’s true character comes out in adversity and I was just determined that ‘Life has to be better than this.’ For months at a time, electricity was off. Many times I watched tv from outside the Armbristers’ house until they let me in,” he recalled.  Read more >>