Advocate for autism – ASTT and TLSC
New technology was not a problem for me
Coloured my detailed drawings with ‘Crayola’ – only
Excited by music, long distance drives and KFC
7/10/15 – Teresina Sieunarine, President, ASTT
On behalf of my own family and the staff and families of ASTT I convey our sympathy to Gina and her entire family.
In 1989 Gina, her husband Ishmael (Bobby) together with Gina’s sister Lana and a friend became foundation members of our parent support group coming from Point Fortin to our meetings in Central Trinidad.
We started meeting regularly in the Kiwanis of Piarco library building at St. Helena Village and we would share stories of our children with autism. We learned some coping strategies from each other.
I remember Gina saying that she and Bobby would take turns sleeping at night because Rance would not sleep well. One had to be on alert as children with autism can easily run away from home and hurt themselves.
Gina and her family would travel up from Point Fortin and attend meetings and family days regularly. In 1999 when we began training workshops by autism experts from USA Gina would attend and learn as much as she could about autism. It was in that same year that her husband Bobby died. A few years later, on Rance’s 21st birthday on the 3rd November 2003, the Therapeutic & Life Skills Centre opened in Point Fortin. Rance and a few other adults with autism attended the sessions.
It has not been easy for Gina and her friends, especially after Rance decided after a few months that “he had enough of school”. She now had to ensure that he was cared for at home while she continued the Centre at Baptist Road. Her family and many relatives and friends have helped to support Gina.
On behalf of our families it is with great sadness that we say goodbye to Rance but we know that he will now be welcomed by our Lord into eternal life.
Please click here to read the full eulogy for Rance by his family members.