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Statement at Old Boys Xmas Dinner on Ramlogan Mahabir
Posted: Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Ramlogan Mahabir (left) Receiving his Plaque from The President of the Hillview Old Boys Association, Mr.Peter Machikan
Ramlogan Mahabir (left) Receiving his Plaque from The President of the Hillview Old Boys Association, Mr.Peter Machikan

By Stephen Kangal
December 14, 2013
At Hillview College, Tunapuna

Mr. Master of Ceremonies- I 95's Henderson

Hard -working and dedicated President, Mr. Peter Machikan and Members of the Executive of the Hillview Old Boys Association (HOBA)

The Principal of Hillview College, Mr. Leslie Mahase

His Worship the Mayor of the Borough of Chaguanas and Graduate of Hillview College,
Councillor Gopaul Boodan

Councillor Esme Forde-Vice-Chairman of the Tunapuna-Piarco Regional Corporation and Graduate of Hillview College

Past Presidents of the PTA Messrs Ian Kernahan Khan and Idris Saqui

Secretary of the Hillview College PTA

Graduates and their Spouses and Companions

Ladies and Gentlemen

Greetings and best wishes for a Happy Xmas and a Bright New Year

Being in this hallowed hall of Hillview Colege tonight always recreates, with great nostalgia, the happy and eventful days that I spent at Hillview. They are now a salient part of my aging psyche. Thank you all for supporting this Xmas and Award Event. I know that Peter and his team deserve our fullest support and I am grateful to you for this gesture.

I thank His Worshipful Mayor of Chaguanas for gracing this function.We today claim ownership of him and his successes in the field of human welfare and politics.

There are several dimensions and aspects to the reputation and exploits of one of our two honourees. I am pleased to be present his credentials tonight. Obviously I cannot outline them all in this brief citation.

I am very grateful to the Association to be accorded this singular honour and privilege to set out the achievements of this outstanding graduate. He will be conferred with a plaque of honour and achievement by the Old Boys Association for 2013.

Accordingly let me restrict myself and recite those aspects of the contribution and successes that relate to his presence at Hillview. In doing so, the outstanding and unique cricketing legacy that Mr. Ramlogan Mahabir forged and embellished at Hillview College is the dominant consideration. However we cannot forget his affable and co-operative personality, his exemplary inter-personal relations with his peers and his caring fatherhood to his children.

Ram comes from a Warrenville clan of aggressive and fearsome speed merchants- they who instill fear and trembling in all opening batsmen.

These peddlers of pace illuminated and electrified cricket pitches in Central Trinidad. In fact I personally knew his father when I was only seven years young- a man of imposing and regal stature and a pace like fire man himself.

He attracted great attention and following with his exocet pace in Warrenville where he was a driver at Caroni Wilderness Estate. His other son, Bissondial whom, I knew very well was also a speed merchant of no mean but fearsome repute. He also terrorized batsmen with the swift smell of red leather kissing and swifly caressing the air as it sped to the wicket-keeper.

It is said that the fruit does not fall far from the tree.

When our guest of honour, Ramlogan Mahabir entered Hillview in January 1959, I was about to enter Form Five. He came also from Warrenville CMI School where I also attended until 1950.
His enrolment at Hillview was immediate, profound and dramatic in cricketing terms. He was also the beneficiary of continuous mango diplomacy -the minute details of which some of his peers are quite familiar and also benefitted.

In his first year of 1959, such was his fearsome, devastating and skittling reputation with red leather, that he was summarily drafted into the Hillview Senior Cricket Team by Sports Master Llewellyn Forde. He had established his prowess as a typhoonic pace-like -fire opening bowler. He provided yeoman service to cricket at Hillview for this Team throughout his student days. He never missed a match.

He made the difference between winning and losing at Hillview. Cricket became the passport by which he had endeared himself to the staff, students and just beyond the immediate boundary of the playground to his dear wife Margaret who is here with us today.

Our guest of honour had a penchant and predilection for three's. However he was never in the forests. He had three sons, in the early 80's, simultaneously at Hillview- Anil in Upper Six, Anand in Lower Six and Ashvani in Form One an unsurpassed record that still stands.

There were three brothers who were fearsome speedsters-Bissoondial, Balroop and let us say Ramlogan.

In 1964 he took three wickets against St. Mary's in the National Colleges Finals. He also put the three basic elements of body, mind and spirit in his loyal defence of the reputation of Hillview in the field of cricket.

This helped to develop beyond the boundary an incipient and growing College loyalty and to carve the beginnings of a legacy and imperative of an expanding and strong Hillview community.

Let us tonight pay enormous tribute to this 1964 graduate for his successes achieved in the field of primary education notably in preparing students for the passing the stressful Common Entrance and the SEA.

He was an excellent Common Entrance tutor whose reputation spread throughout the teaching and supervisory community. He has also authored Test books for preparing and drilling students for both of these examinations. These books are used throughout the primary school system.

Side by side with the success of our men stand our supporting, unsung and caring wives. Our honoured guest of honour could not have done it without the help of his dear wife Margaret and children Anil, Anand, Adesh and Ashvani. This honour and accolade is also theirs.

All these good and noble deeds have been achieved by our friend and avid supporter of the Old Boys Association, Mr. Ramlogan Mahabir-cricketer- educator-husband and exemplar for us all.

I salute him as a game changer at Hillview.

He was simple and unassuming in his moments of cricketing glory and success.

For being a role model for many;

- from cradle to his children,
- to primary for his charges
- to secondary to his peers at Hillview
- from home to his wife Margaret and children

Let us acknowledge him and give him a fitting round of applause.

Ramlogan Mahabir, I commend you for aiming for the stars and attaining iconic stature among men of Hillview.

Well done good and faithful student and servant of the gentleman's game of the flannel, the willow and the red leather cherry.

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