National Hero George Price passed away one year ago today - and in honour of his legacy - today was National Service Day.
All across the country, school children, civic organizations, business houses and regular folk - did what Price would have done: they loaned a hand to worthwhile community causes - from picking up garbage to fixing up parks to delivering care packages to planting flowers.
It is the distillation of Price's truest essence - or as he put it, quote: I believe that happiness consists in serving others and not oneself."
And that's what so many did today - almost all without publicity, fanfare or self - promotion, which is also the way Price would have done it.
One event we did capture was the laying of wreaths at Price's grave-site in the Lord Ridge Cemetery.
Party Leader Francis Fonseca was there and he discussed Price's legacy one year after his passing:..
Hon. Francis Fonseca
"Apart from the symbolism of it which is important for us, to say to the nation that we want to keep the spirit and legacy and memory of George Price alive. For us it's deeply personal, for me, having work and known George Price for so many years - it's very important for us to come and pay tribute to him on the anniversary of his death. It's important, George Price - as the young people here reminded me this morning - he did so much for this country, he did so much for Belize and so we have to as a country and have been demonstrated over the past year George Price has risen above party politics in Belize. Everybody now embraces him as a National Hero, as the Father of our Nation and that's very good to see and we have to do our part as the PUP to keep that alive; to keep the history and story about George Price alive."
"For those who didn't know Mr. Price, the motto of the PUP - To serve the People and those who didn't know him - the children may not know that he spent a large part of his life walking around and doing civic duties. That is the spirit of National Service Day. Would you underscore for us Mr. Price's personal imprint and his personal perspective on national service, community service, civic duties."
Hon. Francis Fonseca
"Absolutely, that was at the core of his being. George Price believed that the only way for us to grow and develop as a nation was to have a united nation where all the people of this country regardless of their ethnicity, regardless of their background; where they came from, their status in life - regardless of their religious beliefs - all of us believe that we were Belizeans and that we had an important contribution to make to the future development of Belize. That was at his essence."
"He was a great man but he lived a very simple life. I talk about it earlier at the mass we had in Belmopan. He lived a very simple life - a man who got up every morning at 4am, he shave, went off to mass for 5:30 and always at Holy Redeemer if he was in Belize City. After he came back he would have a simple breakfast; this was every day, a piece of toast, a piece of cheese, a glass of room temperature rain water and then he would head off for the rest of the day out into the country."
"On any given day Mr. Price could be seen in Punta Gorda or in Corozal Town or he could be seen in some part of Belize City walking and talking to people learning from them what their challenges and concerns were. That was the essence of his leadership."
After the wreath laying, Fonseca and the PUP made a donation of bedding items to the Raymond Parks Shelter.