Former national footballer finds way around crashed dream

Andrew Henry is a former goalkeeper for Jamaica’s national Under-17 and Under-20 teams.

He had a dream to, one day, represent his native land at the highest level.

However, that dream literally crashed in 2002, moments after Henry played his first National Premier League match for Constant Spring Football Club at Constant Spring Oval.

A motorcar hit him from the bike he was driving on his home-bound journey.

He currently has a pin in his left leg and one in his side; his shoulder is still out of socket.

The pain, like a ghost, still haunts the native of Cassava Piece, St Andrew.

He explained that, as a result of being unable to continue playing football, he decided to dedicate his life to training young goalkeepers.

He said relatives sometimes tell him to stop as a result of his injuries, but he can’t stop – not now; not anytime soon.

Henry told The Beacon that he has coached a number of promising and great goalkeepers.

They include Damion Hyatt, a former national goalkeeper who now plays for Arnett Gardens in the National Premier League.

Henry is now coaching Damion’s younger brother, Derland Hyatt, who is the goalkeeper at Charlemont High School.

“It is not the end of the world for me,” Henry said, adding: “I can’t play the game any more and so I am teaching it.”

In the meantime, Henry attended Constant Spring Primary and Junior High School, as well as Glengoffe High where he met then student Damion Hyatt.

He has one child, and is on the verge of welcoming another.

Henry, the son of Desrene Thenstead and Eian Henry, told The Beacon that he is from a football family.

He is the first cousin of Akeem Thensend who plays for University of the West Indies, Shavar Thomas who coached Portmore United, and Alex Thomas who is coaching Arnett Gardens.

Henry said a number of people and groups – including Constant Spring Masters – have contributed to his success.

“I am here with the Charlemont High School guys on campus sometimes. I go home when I feel like,” said the football enthusiast.

Henry, who recently was the goalkeeper coach at Christiana High School in Manchester, expressed gratitude to Charlemont High, which has given him the latest opportunity to make a living – and to make more goalkeepers.

By Horace Mills, Journalist; B.A. degree in Media and Communications; CARIMAC, University of the West Indies


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