By Morissa Lindsay
Patrick ‘Pat De Dog’ Oxley, a person who was deemed as the best second division setter Barbados has ever seen, was remembered as a loyal father to his son Akeel and a lover of sports, music, entertainment and the community.
Due to this fact, it was no surprise that the late Oxley who lost his battle to cancer was given the sort of vigorous send-off he would have wanted with praise and worship, as your complete local volleyball fraternity including his beloved Deacons Club and particularly the Development in Motion Volleyball team which he founded, all were in attendance at Sanctuary Empowerment yesterday for the service of thanksgiving.
The son of Gloria Oxley and Elwyn Maynard and the brother of former senior Barbados volleyball captain Elwyn, Sherwin and Daryl and sister Sandra, Oxley received many glowing tributes. Amongst those were from longstanding Barbados Volleyball Association member Carol-Lyn Edghill, his close friend Jason King who was emotional in his tribute, Ordene Dottin who sang Thank You Jesus for the Blood together with Derick Alleyne with a beautiful poem that spoke about A Sportsman Rounded and Gifted.
Nonetheless, it was Elwyn, one in all the best outside hitters Barbados has ever produced that gave an excellent insight throughout the eulogy into the lifetime of his late brother who was known for his love of volleyball, road tennis, cricket, netball, football, music and dance.
“It is just not unusual to listen to comments about out-of-control young people, the lack of community and the older ones amongst us lamenting gone are the nice old days. People of yesterday’s generation reminisce about knowing your neighbour, watching out for one another and giving back to the community. These thoughts stirred the emotion as we glance back on the lifetime of Patrick ‘Pat De Dog’ Oxley gone much too soon.
“He epitomized what was good about living and serving the community. The essence of Patrick’s life could be encapsulated in three true features – family, Deacons and volleyball – in that order. In these three characteristics, family by blood and friendship; family of Deacons and his volleyball family they were all tied up by a commitment to loyalty, discipline and labor.
“He loved his family especially his son Akeel whom he worshiped and treated his nephew Ashe (Oxley) as if he was his own. From the time they may walk these two boys were delivered to the hardcourts to follow their fathers who themselves made the courts home. Patrick’s family was wider than we predict, it included Andrew, Alvin, Troy, George, Dre, Peppers, Think Above, Brian Worrell, Dale Clarke, Bird, Jake and Bruce,” Oxley said.
He added: “Anybody who was given the chance to play with Patrick for Deacons second division truly enjoyed his exceptional setting. Other players and fans would move across the grounds and other teams, but Patrick stayed with the Deacons Club.
“He knew every crack on the court and it will be a useful exercise if the club could approach the Community Development Department or National Sports Council and have the wall of the community centre facing the court designated as a wall of memory and a few type of recognition in place to point out our respect for the type of dedication Patrick gave to his club particularly and to volleyball and the community usually.
“We’ll miss Patrick but we’re confident that he has gone to a greater place. We could be reassured that though it gave the impression to be a brief life he lived it well doing the things he loved most and sharing them with those he loved most locally he loved and cherished.”
Through the service at Sanctuary which was also attended by representatives of Queen’s College, Harrison College and Springer Memorial where he coached in addition to former work colleagues on the Ministry of Public Works and the Psychiatric Hospital, it was also noticeable that several Deacons volleyball shirts with the number two behind them were on stage in full display. It was a fitting
tribute to Patrick who played in those shirts as a setter.
A former student of the St. Leonard’s Boys’ School, Oxley gave his life to Christ five years ago, said his former work colleague and friend Mario Bruce who spoke about Oxley’s spiritual journey. Reverend Dr Suzette Husbands gave the closing prayer and as Oxley’s coffin was led out of Sanctuary Church by his brother Elwyn and son Akeel, a guard of honour by members of the volleyball awaited his final exit. He was interred at Westbury Cemetery. ([email protected])