She sometimes struggles to come to terms with the fact that she is still alive.
Delrose Barnes, who said a nephew-in-law recently chopped her four times with a machete while she was heading out of her community to feed street people, broke down in tears on Sunday afternoon, January 26.
She could not believe that, despite the attempted murder and being in and out of hospital, she accomplished her longtime dream of becoming a Practical Nurse.
“Never give up; aim for your goals, think high, think big and you will achieve,” she said moments after collecting her certificate during a graduation ceremony at Success Academy of Vocational Studies in Linstead, St. Catherine.
Reflecting on the ordeal, Barnes told The Beacon that said she was in the Time and Patience area of Linstead on June 29 last year when her machete-wielding attacker struck.
“I was attached by my in-law and chopped in my head, my neck and two hands,” she said, pointing at the scars.
Barnes, who initially spent a month and week in hospital, has been in and out of the medical facility.
She already underwent three surgeries and is waiting to do another.
Asked why she was attacked, Barnes stated that the incident stemmed from a family dispute over land that she knows nothing about.
The matter is still being adjudicated by the court.
Meanwhile, Principal at Success Academy, Patricia Anderson, during the graduation ceremony, gave Barnes a special award for the perseverance she displayed in completing her studies.
She defied all doubts about her medical fitness, and successfully sat her external exam the very week she was released from hospital.
At the time Barnes was chopped, she was the beneficiary of a scholarship, which Success Academy awarded through the Linstead Community Development Committee – commonly referred to as the Linstead CDC.
Barnes actually was travelling to volunteer with the Linstead CDC’s street people feeding programme when she allegedly was attacked.
The Linstead CDC, during a ceremony on December 18 last year, awarded Barnes for remaining a personification of tenacity despite the savagery she experienced.
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