In Memoriam: Honoring Those We Lost in 2021

Life is about balance and harmony, so when there are highs, there will be lows. When there is war, there will be peace. When there is hate, there is love. Though we all understand that death is a natural part of life, it still brings us grief when we lose loved ones. As we prepare for a new year, we want to take some to reflect and be thankful for those who we lost in 2021. Let’s celebrate their legacy and continue to keep their families in our prayers.

Colin Powell

Colin L. Powell (April 5, 1937 – October 18, 2021) was appointed Secretary of State by George W. Bush on January 20, 2001, after being unanimously confirmed by the U.S. Senate. He served for four years, leaving the position on January 26, 2005. He was the first African American to serve as Secretary of State.

Butch Stewart

Gordon Arthur Cyril “Butch” Stewart OJ CD (July 6, 1941 – January 4, 2021) was a Jamaican hotelier and businessman. He was the founder, owner, and chairman of Sandals Resorts, Beaches Resorts, and their parent company Sandals Resorts International, as well as The ATL Group and its subsidiaries Appliance Traders and The Jamaica Observer.

Photo by Kathy Hutchins

Cicely Tyson

Cicely Tyson (December 18, 1924- January 28, 2021) was an award-winning film, television, and stage actress, notable for her roles in ‘The Autobiography of Miss Jane Pittman,’ ‘The Help’ and Broadway’s ‘The Trip to Bountiful,’ among others.

Photo by MediaPunch/Shutterstock

Bunny Wailer

Neville “Bunny Wailer” O’Riley Livingston (April 10, 1947- March 2, 2021) ​​was a Jamaican singer-songwriter and percussionist. He was an original member of the reggae group The Wailers along with Bob Marley and Peter Tosh. A three-time Grammy Award winner, he is considered one of the longtime standard-bearers of reggae music.

Midwin Charles

Midwin Charles, (July 17, 1973 – April 6, 2021) was a Haitian American defense attorney and legal analyst for MSNBC, CNN, and other cable outlets.

Clinton “Sonny” Roberts 

Clinton “Sonny” Roberts (1932 – March 17, 2021), often known as Sonny Orbitone, was a Jamaican record producer who had success within the British reggae market in the 1960s, 1970s, and 1980s with his Planetone and Orbitone record labels.

Reverend Dr. Horace Orlando Russel

Reverend Dr. Horace Orlando Russel (November 3, 1929- April 5, 2021) was an international Baptist theologian and an ecumenist, a Church historian, and a pioneer in the study of Caribbean church history.

Dennis Johnson OD

Dennis Johnson OD (May 6, 1939 – April 22, 2021) was an Olympian, Track and field legend, and coach. He was considered the architect of the modern Jamaica track program, Johnson started a sports program at the College of Arts, Science and Technology (CAST) now the University of Technology in 1971.

Photo by Pit Buehler/

Lee Scratch Perry

Rainford Hugh “Lee Scratch” Perry (March 20, 1936 – August 29, 2021)   was a reggae singer, producer, and studio wizard who pushed the boundaries of Jamaican music. ​​ Perry was a pioneer in the 1970s’ development of dub music with his early adoption of studio effects to create new instrumentals of existing reggae tracks. He has worked with and produced for various artists, including Bob Marley and the Wailers, the Congos, Adrian Sherwood, the Beastie Boys, and many others.

Photo by Lev Radin/

Michael K. Williams

Michael Kenneth Williams (November 22, 1966 – September 6, 2021) was an Emmy-nominated actor and producer and one of our generation’s most respected and acclaimed talents.

Robbie Shakespeare 

Robert Warren Dale Shakespeare (September 27, 1953 – December 8, 2021) was a Jamaican bassist and half of the rhythm duo Sly and Robbie. The duo played with and produced some of the biggest names in music while transforming reggae with bold infusions of rock, blues, and jazz.

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