Sir Sandy’s Story
Everyone knows very well about nation builders and patriots like George Price and Philip Goldson.
But there are others, equally patriotic and nationalistic who reside in the shadows of history, the stories untold, even as their contributions endure.
One such patriot who's been sitting in the background of Belizean history is Alexander Hunter. He was the first Minister of Tourism, and he's credited with the work he did on policies to govern the Tourism Industry, Agriculture, the Sugar Industry, and the Fishing Industry. He is also described as a politician who championed the causes of the working class during his 18 years as an elected official.
And if you'd like to learn more about Hunter, you can read about him in a new book written by his daughter, Lita Hunter Krohn. It's a tribute to his accomplishments as a Belizean leader and statesman, and today, the book was launched at the Saint John's College Art Center.
Lita Hunter-Krohn, author
"Okay, the book is called "The man who wore Khaki." Why khaki, because he wore khaki, he travelled in doreys, he travelled in Land Rover, he travelled in horse back and it's the working person's clothes and that what farmers and fishermen and different people wore and that what he wore? He was at one with them. There was never like me and them. It was always as a fishermen, he knew it was dangerous to go out there and he knew the perils. He had total respect for the working class people and so that's why I called it "The man who wore Khaki." Why did I do it? I didn't plan to. I start to look at photos after my parents past and then I thought let me do something and it just grew and grew and I think it could work as an inspiration. I feel we have this beautiful country, we really do. It just needs good management and I think he manages it well with proper land reform, tourism - he was the first minister of tourism. With citrus industry under his care - many things, especially land reform, caneros - all of these issues."
"He joined the People's United Party in the early 50s. He contributed to Mr. Price when Mr. Price was being accused of sedition by the colonial government. He was the star witness. The story is right there. And then he grew with the People's United Party and from 1961, that's the first time and then later 70-79."
"You hear about Philp Goldson, George Price. Why is it that you never really hear mucj about Mr. Alexander?"
Lita Hunter-Krohn, author
"I don't know. That's why I had to write about it, because I know the story. He left all his papers, meticulous notes and I guess he didn't have the star quality, but he was there in the background working and producing and showing transparency and doing it on honestly."
The book is published by the Image Factory Art Foundation, and it sells for 20 dollars at the Factory's book shop.
The Man Who Wore Khaki
Well-known Belizean historian Lita Hunter Krohn has chronicled, as well as taught the history of the Jewel for many years. Her work as a student and scholar in the study of past events has taken her to many places. Krohn’s most recent publication is a reflection on her late father’s work as a former politician, including his many contributions to the cooperative movement in the country. The Man Who Wore Khaki is an in-depth look at the life of Alexander ‘Sandy’ Hunter. Hunter is a former Minister of Trade and Industry, who retired from electoral politics in the seventies after representing the Fort George Division. Krohn describes him as an unsung hero.
Lita Hunter Krohn, Author
“This was never planned. I was going through photographs after my father died, after my mother died and was sorting them out and in those days people took pictures and there were lots of photo albums and so I just had to do something with this and I thought let me just make a quick little book and captions and that will be it. But as I got into it, it couldn’t be like that. You can’t do a story just like that, you have to have the background and you know, because of my history I had to put in the history and put everything in context and I always have my little agendas too and that’s in the book. And I think my father was what they call an unsung hero in his own way.”
“The direct content of the book is a historical perspective on Belize through either your father’s eyes or your eyes using his work?”
Lita Hunter Krohn
“It’s a combination because I try to hook us; you know you always have to have like a hook to do something. So the hook, I think, was him and then the background was that I needed to put it in context.”
“What are some of the notable accomplishments that your father did that was chronicled in this particular publication?”
Lita Hunter Krohn
“Number one, that I remember, he was the first Minister of Tourism with a financial budget of two hundred dollars in 1961. It went up a little bit to fifteen hundred dollars a few years later. Those steps that you see at St. Herman’s were built during his time.”