Mother devastated after losing son in Army Base explosion

Cheryl Nicholson and Kevon Nicholson

By: Devina Samaroo and Andrew Carmichael

Cheryl Nicholson cannot begin to explain the pain she feels having lost her son, 23-year-old Kevon Nicholson in a gruesome manner during this morning’s explosion at the Guyana Defence Force (GDF) Base Camp Stephenson.

He will be the second child she will have to bury, after her daughter, 24-year-old Lonnet Nicholson, was murdered several years ago.

Kevon, her youngest of five children, had returned to his Levi Dam, Angoy’s Avenue, New Amsterdam home on April 22 where he spent majority of his time with the family.

“From the time he hit the gate and he see us, he got a broad smile,” Cheryl recalled during an interview with INews.

“He made sure we shop everything and when he come back [home from shopping] he was jolly and just happy,” Cheryl stated as she reminisced on her last memories with her ‘baby boy’.

Kevon left home on Tuesday last to return to Camp Stephenson but Cheryl lamented not getting to see him leave as she was still sleeping when her son departed.

“Only to hear this morning that he died,” the woman said as tears escaped her eyes.

“All I could ask God is why, why? I don’t know, God got all the answers.”

Kevon was described as a “gentle and mannerly young man”. “We never get a bad complaint concerning him,” Cheryl noted. He had joined the army in 2017.

Kevon Nicholson

Kevon, along with two other colleagues, died after there was an unexplained explosion at the Arms Store Complex at Camp Stephenson at around 09:00hrs today. Two ranks were also injured during the incident.

The GDF said the explosion occurred as the soldiers were “preparing pyrotechnics for demolition”. A Board of Inquiry has since been launched into the circumstances which led to the explosion.

Dead: Lonnett Nicholson

Meanwhile, Cheryl’s daughter, Lonnet, was stabbed to death by her ex-husband on December 28, 2016. Lonnet, a mother of three, was stabbed 15 times to her body by her ex-husband, who later turned himself over to the police.

Lonnet had worked at the National Psychiatric Hospital, Fort Canje, Berbice. She had separated from the man, who was a prison warden, due to domestic violence.