When 17-year-old Holly Seth’s boyfriend gave her $15,000 to have an abortion done, after finding out that she was pregnant, the young woman went straight to the store and purchased ‘baby clothes’.
Without saying anything to her partner, she decided to keep her child and raise him all by herself.
Fast-forward 17 months later, the precious little infant she fought so hard to keep has died -tragically burnt to death two weeks ago in a fire, believed to be arson, at Kaneville, East Bank Demerara (EBD).
In an interview with a heart-broken Seth, she explained how her “world” has crashed when she found out about the death of eight-month-old Romain Seth after their Lot 462 B Kaneville home was burnt to the ground.
At the time of the fire, the young mother was not at home – she was out looking for food for the child.
She stressed that being a single unemployed mother was tough and on the night before the fire, she went out to get milk so that when the little one woke up, he would have something to drink.
However she did not make it back home in time to feed her son.
The baby’s grandmother, Michelle Menezes, in whose care he was left, said that there was nothing she could have done to save his life.
Menezes said that she had just fed the baby and put him to sleep when she heard a strange noise at the back of her home.
“I get up and went to the back to see what it was and then I hear another sound and when I watch (out the window) I see big balls of fire (being thrown at the house). They (suspects) roll up paper, light it, and fling it at the house, and if you see was how much, like two, three coming at one time,” the woman recounted.
She said that by the time she called out for her relatives to run out of the house, the blaze had already engulfed most of her property, because it was constructed of old boards.
“When I went for my grandson, he was already burn up, because they (suspects) push open the window and throw in a ball with fire on the bed he was sleeping on,” the woman lamented, as tears flowed down her cheeks.
She said that she was forced to flee the burning house and leave the baby behind.
Meanwhile, the next time 17-year-old Holly would see her child was when fire-fighters separated his burnt remains from debris.
According to the young woman, it is hard for her to recall leaving her son at home sleeping and then returning to something that doesn’t even look like him.
Recounting when she first found out that she was pregnant, Seth said that while she was happy, she was heartbroken when the child’s father gave her $15,000 and told her to put the other $10,000 to have an abortion done.
While raising the child was her decision, she always wanted her son to know who his father was but little Romain never got that opportunity since his father refused to play his part. Nevertheless, Holly said that she gave the toddler everything he needed.
To support him, she would babysit and do household chores for relatives and use the money to take care of Romain while her mother also assisted her.
The toddler was learning to say a few words when he died.
At present, the police are still trying to locate the family’s teenage neighbour and his friends who are allegedly part of a gang that raids homes in Kaneville and other villages.
According to the devastated grandmother, three Sundays ago, her children were playing in the yard when one of them came across a gun hidden in a tree and called out for her.
“When my son tell me, I say probably it was a water gun, but when I go, I see the long gun in the tree, so I took it out and carry it to the back to get it away from the children and by the time I walk to go back in front, he (neighbour) come and ask me weh he gun deh,” the woman said.
She said that she told her teenage neighbour that she had no idea what he was talking about, but when the young man called out for a friend and asked him to bring the other weapon; she got scared and quickly took him to where she had put the firearm.
“When I give he the gun, I tell he that I don’t want anyone walk through my yard, and he left and then I leave home to go out on the road, and like he thought I went to the station. So he went and harass my daughter to get my number and he called and tell me if I report he, then he would kill my family,” Menezes recounted.
The woman claims the young man offered her $20,000 but she refused.
“The day after I find the gun, I went to Brickdam Station to make a report and they send me to Ruimveldt, but I didn’t go, because I was still afraid.”
As days went by, the woman said that the tension between her and the young man and his family grew, with the suspect’s mother telling her that things “would not look nice” if her son goes to jail.
Menezes said that things got even worse when her neighbour’s friend sold her son a stolen phone.
“He didn’t want to give my son back his money when my son realized the phone was stolen and a night my son was coming home and he robbed and beat up my son,” the woman related.
She claimed that she immediately took her son to the station and made a report of the assault, hidden gun and the threats.
“The police come and hold up a couple of them for 72 hours, and now they come and burn my house,” the woman said.
She said that she is convinced that it was her neighbour and his gang who started the fire because while her house was burning, she went over to a house next door where the gang would allegedly meet up and divide the spoils after a robbery. She allegedly found gasoline, slippers and papers which she believed were used to start the fire.
As a result of the fire and the death of the toddler, Holly and her relatives are scared to return to the area, since the suspects might also be there.
Anyone willing to assist the family can contact 670-8476.
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