originally from Bataca and a resident of Canefield
September 23, 2021
His wife of 51 years, Glenda Tyson at Canefield
his adopted children:
Matthew Burton and his family-Wallhouse;
Vilna Harper Henry and her family-New York;
Dr. Melissa Harper SaintJean and her family-Miami;
Claudette Esprit and her family-Canefield; and
His brother Byron Tyson
Nieces: Debra and family, and
Odette and family, all in England
Nephew: Roy Tyson and family in Antigua;
Countless other nieces and nephews in Dominica and abroad, including the Tyson, Esprit, Walter, Benjamin, Georges, Durand and Archibald families;
Many other close family, including Mary Joseph, Vanier Martin, the Harper family, Rev. Henry James and family, and the Letang family
Friends too numerous to mention.
Pastor and members of New Day Fellowship and Deliverance Ministries.
Past and present members of the Dominica Music Lovers Band.
The homegoing service for the late Kenneth Oliver Tyson will take place on October 23, 2021, at 10:00 a.m., at New Day Fellowship and Deliverance Ministries, Pottersville.
Internment will follow at the Roseau Public Cemetery.
Kenneth Oliver Tyson, affectionately known as Uncle Ken, was born to Addin and Margaret Tyson at Bataca, Carib Reserve on April 6, 1935. Ken was the 8th of 9 siblings: Ann, Margaret, Augustine, John, Stanley, Delia, Molly and Byron.
Ken received his elementary education at the Salybia and Marigot Government Schools; and at the Roseau Mixed Infant School after he was practically adopted and brought to Roseau by Rev. and Mrs. William Surbrook. In 1947, he began his secondary education at the Dominica Grammar School and graduated with the Cambridge School Certificate. In his own words, Ken described his time at the Dominica Grammar School as the “best years of his life”.
After graduation from high school, Ken began his career as a Civil Servant with the Government of Dominica. He also held the following positions: Draughtsman with the Lands and Surveys, Public Works Department; Planning Assistant, and Building Inspector and Construction Foreman with Central Housing and Planning Authority; Manager of Dominica Mortgage Finance Company; Development Control Officer, and Chief Technical Officer with Development & Planning Corporation; and Chief Technical Officer with the Economic Development Unit, Prime Minister’s Office until he retired in 1992. Ken’s passion for the outdoors led him to post-retirement employment as a part-time Real Estate Agent with Safe Haven Real Estate. Ken’s wit, sharp mind, expertise, integrity, and desire to serve others, propelled him to keep going. He remained active and carried out assessment and appraisal of properties for Goodwill, Fond Cole’ and Canefield Housing Schemes, and in a private capacity for the Roseau City Council, Canefield Urban Council, and numerous other individuals. He was also an Approved Evaluator/Estimator for the Roseau Cooperative Credit Union, now known as National Cooperative Credit Union for over thirty years, and for other financial institutions in Dominica. Ken’s work was reputable and his signature was accepted by Dominica High Court and Magistrate Court as Valuer/Arbitrator under the Dominica Land Acquisition Act.
Ken was extremely ambitious and his pursuit to further his education led him to training in Construction Drafting in Puerto Rico, Civil Drafting in India, Drafting and Evaluation of Properties in Barbados, and Middle Management in Jamaica.
Ken got to know Glenda Olivia Joseph at the Surbrooks’ residence. As young adults they pursued their own interests, but Ken eventually recognized the jewel that Glenda was, and after her return to Dominica from training in Barbados, a serious relationship was birthed. For four years while Glenda studied in Circleville, Ohio, they nourished their long-distance relationship, planned a wedding, and on July 30, 1970, the same month she returned to Dominica, they united in marriage and became Kenneth and Glenda Tyson. Glenda remained the love of Ken’s life and together, over the 51 years of their marriage, they boast many accomplishments and demonstrated true commitment and to each other. Ken and Glenda were of one mind as they housed, supported, nurtured, provided spiritual guidance and invested in the lives of countless children and young people, including Matthew Burton, Vilna Harper Henry, Dr. Melissa Harper St Jean, Claudette Esprit, and Jean Phillip Seraphin, to name a few. “Kenda” as their home was named, was always welcoming and provided beautiful memories for many.
Ken was a proud Kalinago son. He contributed to Bataca, Sineku and Atkinson government schools, and to the general Kalinago community whenever the opportunity arose. In his own words he declared “while I may not have been seen daily on the Reserve, my heart lies there and I am concerned about the future of my people.”
Ken was a humble, jovial, loving, hard-working, helpful soul who never sought recognition. He was the historian of the family who shared his knowledge freely. Ken loved to read and he kept abreast with world happenings. He was always extremely grateful for every blessing, no matter how insignificant. Ken loved animals – he bred dogs and raised agoutis, he loved boats; he loved cars – anyone remember his voltswagons? and who can forget “little red faithful?”; he loved driving and could find his way around every corner of Dominica; he loved music – and was a member of the renowned Dominica Music Lovers Band for 32 years; he loved to travel; he loved guns and hunting – he and Reuben, in their day, made manicous, agoutis and wild pigs tremble; he loved his family; he loved people; and most of all, he loved God.
For most of his life, Ken was actively engaged in spreading the good news of salvation. He always shared words of wisdom and encouraged everyone he came into contact with, to put God in their lives. In his youth, he traveled by foot and horseback to assist Rev. and Mrs Surbrook as they spread Christianity across Dominica. Thereafter, he was actively engaged in Christian ministry at all levels: at the Roseau and Goodwill Christian Union Churches; as co-pastor of Restoration Ministries; and as a member at New Day Fellowship and Deliverance Ministries.
Ken left us suddenly after a brief illness on Thursday, September 23, 2021 and we know if he had a choice, he would have wanted to remain with us a little longer, but our Lord who gave, has taken away, and we declare in complete submission to his Sovereignty: “Blessed be the Name of the Lord”. His beautiful wife Glenda and family, his brother Byron and family, his numerous nephews, nieces, cousins, friends, and church family, grieve and will hold him forever in their hearts. Thanks to all of you for your kind words and acts of comfort extended to the family during this sad time.