“I miss him a lot!”
Jean Ramjohn-Richards struggled to keep her emotions in check yesterday but the tears flowed as she spoke to the media at the Maracas, St Joseph home which she shared with Max Richards her husband of 50 years
Richards death on Monday evening plunged the nation into mourning with flags flown at half mast, but it was a shock to the family which he held dear to his heart.
Speaking to the media yesterday, Ramjohn-Richards admitted that her husband “was not perfectly healthy,” but she said, “I did not expect anything like this at this moment.”
“These things,” she said “come like a shock to you. It was not like I was expecting it. Sometimes you see somebody ill and later on....”
Recently she said Richards had been having “a little problem with walking, challenges with his walking. He was hypertensive and atrial fibulation that has been under control for a long time... sometimes it acts up. On the weekend it did act up again.
By Monday I thought he did not look himself so I took him to the hospital. But I thought he would go there and they would stabilise him and in a week’s time he would be home. Not knowing....”
Richards suffered cardiac arrest and died at around 7.40 on Monday evening.
Ramjohn-Richards said she had been talking about getting some nurses to help until he recovered, “but that did not happen.”
Ramjohn Richards said now that her husband is gone she keeps asking herself “did I do enough I don’t know. I tried to be with him all the time. But I think God knows best, and we can’t question that.” Her voice broke and the tears flowed as she confessed “I miss him, I really miss him a lot.”
Ramjohn-Richards said the former president “liked the culture, the joie de vivre of Trinidad and Tobago. He played mas every year.” She recalled that “when he became President the first question that was asked was are you going to play mas and he said yes. Because it was something that he loved. I was always with him, I liked it too,” she said.
She recalled that her husband was criticised sometimes “because they thought there was too much partying, but he took his duties seriously. But he also had that other side to his life where he liked to enjoy himself.”
Richards started the UWI Fete 20 ago when he was principal of the St Augustine Campus.
Ramjohn Richards said “a few days ago he told me that he was going to the UWI Fete on Sunday, but he passed before.”
She said, “Sometime ago we were talking and I said I would go quietly and get buried and you will announce it after and he laughed and he said like me I suppose I would have to have a State funeral. He more or less said yes to a State funeral. A lot of people will be disappointed if we had a private burial.”
Ramjohn- Richards repeated “I miss him a lot.”