Sergeant Edward Lamptey - the rest of the story. See beginning of the story on 10/9/17.


It was difficult to understand him for his face and particularly his mouth was disfigured and drawn as though he had suffered a stroke. He propelled himself into his house, returning in a moment with a packet all wrapped in newspaper and tied with his native ti-ti. He sat on the step of his verandah and as I watched him trying to undo the knots with fingers that were but stumps of fingers, for Sergeant Edward Lamptey was a leper, I felt my hands go forward many times to help. It was with the greatest difficulty that I held them back and held back also the tears which kept flooding into my eyes. He did not seem conscious of his disability and so I waited. Slowly he undid the parcel-first one newspaper sheet and then another until he brought out and unfolded, almost with reverence I felt, a flag-The Flag- under which he had once been prepared "to do or die." He was still the old soldier living in the past. He pointed to a long bamboo which lay beside his house, and looking at his cement steps with the hole in the centre, I exclaimed half aloud: "A flagstaff."

It was indeed with great difficulty that he was persuaded to make use of crutches. He feared they would not support him but once having used them going to the weekly market he realized all that they meant to him. No longer is he watching from his own doorstep but there he is right in the midst of things.

Sergeant Edward Lamptey is an important figure in the Settlement, for Sister has brought his training and discipline to good use and, as Chief Scoutmaster, each week he drills his troop, teaches them the Scout rules, examines their uniforms, which he collects after each function and keeps possession of until the next time. Two scouts dress him in his uniform - this only for state occasions - fix his beret at just the right angle and carry him to the field, one small boy following with his stool and yet another carrying his crutches.

At "Welcome" and "Farewell" ceremonies he is there with his troop. For Governor's visits they are on display, and when the Great Governor of all is carried round the palm- and flower- decked streets and compound of the Leprosy Settlement, his scouts are there along the route and as the favoured Guard of Honour at either side of the canopy, under which is the King of all scouts, Christ the King, to whom they whisper their scout rules "For you Jesus, all for you."


0 views

© 2017 by Monica Shaw. Proudly created by Comandante

  • Facebook Basic Square