The contribution of the late Reggae icon Gregory Isaacs to Reggae music and Jamaica popular culture is beyond that of our imagination.
Isaacs, a legend in his own kind, helps propelled a global movement in reggae music in the 1970’s and 80’s.
Since the death of Isaacs last week Monday, his family has hinted that they would want a National Heroes Park burial spot for the singer’s final resting place.
Morekeia Isaacs, who is Isaacs youngest daughter, confirmed the notion last week.
“We want to meet with government this week to discuss burying him in Heroes Circle. We want to lobby the government for this. He has done so much for the country.”
Despite the gesture from Isaacs family members, the Jamaican Government has indicated that they did not received a formal request for s spot at Heroes Circle.
The big question is whether Isaacs is a strong candidate for a spot at Heroes Park, baring in mind there are some things that are overshadowing the government signature on such a request. Nevertheless, these are things that can be overlooked, given the vast contribution Isaacs made to Jamaica culture on the global scale.
One such issue the Government will look at is Isaacs criminal record. Isaacs, was imprisoned between 1982 and 1983 following the discovery of an unlicensed firearm at his home, and he also served time for cocaine possession. Then, in 1987, another cocaine bust prompted him to go into rehab.
Many of us in the reggae community will say that Isaacs criminal record is not one that warrant a refusal to be buried at Heroes Park, but without doubts the Jamaican government will take these into strong considering before granting such request. What we now need to do is to lobby the government, instead of just hoping that they will approve the request.
Heroes Circle is the final resting place for National Heroes, former prime ministers and cultural icons including Reggae singer Dennis Brown, actor Ranny Williams, actress Louise Bennett Coverley and her husband Eric Coverley according to government data.
Gregory Isaacs by every means falls inside the ranks of cultural Icons worthy of such esteem recognition.
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