(CMR) Tributes have begun to pour in for veteran broadcaster, Gilbert ‘Gil' Bailey, who died from the coronavirus.
Bailey died in the United States early Monday morning, the news was confirmed by Bailey's grandson on Facebook.
“Shortly after midnight, my mom lost her father. It hurts that she wasn’t able to be by his side while he passed away. He had contracted COVID-19 and had been isolated. When this virus all started, never thought this would impact my family the way it has,” said Bailey's grandson, Korey Faulks in an early morning post.
Faulks shared on Facebook that for the past 3 years his mother had spent time flying between Dayton to NYC to help nurse her father, noting that she had done as much as she could to make Bailey comfortable.
“She even became an engineer and a radio host, alongside my grandfather. She did the best job. I’m proud of my grandfather- who had a very successful life and career. Amazing how he came from a tiny island named Jamaica and landed in NYC and went on a 50 year run on the radio, deeming him the “Godfather of Caribbean Radio,” added Faulks on the social media platform.
Since news of Bailey's passing journalists and others in the Jamaican media fraternity have expressed their condolences.
Broadcast Journalist at Power 106 in Jamaica, Dervan Malcolm, wrote on Facebook, “Easter Monday, April 13, 2020: The Jamaican Diaspora has lost a pioneer on West Indian Radio in the Tri-state area Gil Bailey who just last year came home to Jamaica to celebrate 50 years in broadcasting. Farewell Gil Bailey!”
“This man was a #GIANT in the reggae business in NY and I’m sure the entire country. Before there was a Clinton Lindsay, Carl B, Daved Levy, Dub Master or whomever is dominating the airwaves presently; there was the aptly nicknamed “President” Gilbert Bailey. His program wasn’t just Str8 music. He’d feature many segments including news from the Caribbean and it was where I first heard Mutabaruka,” added another broadcaster from the New York state area.
Bailey was awarded an Order of Distinction by the Jamaican Government.