Tonight, the rank and file of the police department are mourning the death of yet another top cop. His family is in a state of shock after he lost his life in a tragic accident over the weekend. Today, Love News spoke to his family about their immense loss and about the man, who served his country for a quarter of a century. Vejea Alvarez reports.
On Saturday night shortly after nine o’clock forty five year old Assistant Superintendent of Police Fernando Neal left his home to answer the call to serve and protect but unfortunately he was called to his eternal resting place. Neal had just left his home in San Joaquin Village Corozal District and was travelling with another police officer. The pair were on their way to Belize City where they were stationed and upon reaching near the village of Concepcion things took a turn for the worst.
ACP Fitzroy Yearwood, Director of Communications: “They collided into pickup truck driven at the time by an unknown person to the police but we know that the occupants of that pickup were two males. Those persons made good their escape from the scene and Mr.Neal was trapped in the car that they were travelling in. He was later transported to the hospital in Corozal where he was pronounced dead.”
The career police officer had only left his home about five minutes prior to the accident and his family says they’re still in a state of shock. According to his brother in law Armando Aban, Neal’s wife tried to persuade him to stay home but despite having a fever Neal insisted on going to work.
Armando Aban, Brother-in-Law: “What touched us is that he took his second dose of the vaccine and he had fever, my sister was begging him not to go to work but he decided to go because the call of duty is there. Heh ad just left five minutes away. Normally he would take the police bus but I think one of his colleagues called him to accompany him and he decided to accompany him and six minutes after he left we had received a call from one of our uncles to inform one of our brothers in law that an accident had occurred , it was a severe accident. We arrived at the place and we saw him trapped. We saw his body not moving. When his wife and his son arrived we touched him, my sister told me she touched him and he responded and he started to have pulse and started to breathe and it was when they were transferring him to the hospital that he passed away just crossing our village and I think my sister was still in shock, my father who embraced him as son, his mother and father are still alive and his sisters we are still in shock. We cannot believe, his son is twenty one but he still believes his father will come home from work.”
Neal’s death is not only a shock to his family but to the entire police department. The top cop was stationed at Precinct One in Belize City and according to Assistant Superintendent Fitzroy Yearwood the department lost a great man.
ACP Fitzroy Yearwood, Director of Communications: “A rather unique officer. Very very pleasant. I don’t believe anyone that has met him could tell you anything to the contrary. He took his job, his career very seriously and he was one of the officers that wanted to see the department move in certain directions when it comes to investigation and technology and he will be sadly missed by his colleagues at Precinct One. On numerous occasions I would stop in to the station and just say hi and he was always a pleasant person to have a conversation with.”
The closely knit community of San Joaquin Village is where Neal spent most of his life and according to his family the father of one will be missed for an eternity.
Armando Aban, Brother-in-Law: “His contribution was one of the most remarkable especially to our village. I know Fernando, as we call him Nando, all the community calls him Nando he joined the force in 1994 and after five years he married to my sister having bearing the only child that he has. It was a great loss for our family. We did not only lose a police officer we lost a leader in our community, a brother, the minute he married to my sister I didn’t hear anything that domestic violence. He embraced his profession and he became a brother to us. My father embraced him as a son.”
And while there is enough condolence to go around the police have this incident to investigate. They confirmed that one person has been questioned and remains under investigation.