Opposition chairman dies suddenly on campaign trail
NASSAU, Bahamas, Friday August 17, 2012 — Charles Maynard, chairman of the Bahamas main opposition party and a former minister of youth, sports and culture, died suddenly on Tuesday while campaigning for a candidate in a parliamentary election.
The 42-year-old collapsed from an apparent heart attack while riding in a car with another party official in North Abaco after leaving a campaign event, according to a statement released by his Free National Movement (FNM). He was rushed to a clinic, but emergency medical personnel were unable to revive him.
Maynard and his fellow official, Party Secretary General Michael Foulkes, were campaigning for a candidate in a by-election to fill the vacancy left by the resignation of former Prime Minister Hubert Ingraham.
Ingraham and the Free National Movement lost power to the Progressive Liberal Party (PLP) of Prime Minister Perry Christie following general elections in May.
The former prime minister said in a statement that he was saddened by the sudden loss of Maynard.
‘‘Charlie had a wonderful future,’’ Ingraham said. ‘‘He had so much more to contribute to our party and our country. He will be difficult to replace and will be terribly missed.’’
Maynard previously served in parliament representing the Golden Isles district of New Providence, the island that includes Nassau.
John Dinkelman, the chargé d'affaires for the United States Embassy in the Bahamas, issued a statement of condolences and said Maynard’s ‘‘untimely passing will stand as a great loss due to his devotion to the service of others.’’
Maynard is survived by his wife, Zelena, and three daughters.