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Roger Luncheon was a doctor, politician, genuine friend, comrade!

Dear Editor,
The recent passing of Dr. Roger Luncheon signals the end of live engagements with an eminent medical doctor, decades of meaningful interaction with a people’s favoured politician, epochs of genuine friendships, and a longstanding comrade.
His departure is a significant loss to our country, and to thousands of friends and comrades who have modelled their political upbringing and other development charters, guided by a template that can be considered purely an art of ‘LUNCHEONISM.’
Dr. Luncheon grew up as a brilliant Queen’s College student, who demonstrated a tremendous likeness for people from all walks of life from a young age. On his return to Guyana after studying Medicine in the United States of America, he quickly established a tremendous reputation as a highly respected medical doctor.
In many of his personal and articulate declarations, Dr. Roger Luncheon attributed his early affiliation with the People’s Progressive Party (PPP) to his tremendous positive impression of the PPP leadership, particularly Dr. Cheddi Jagan. When the PNC dictatorship created and persisted with the many hardships the country faced politically and economically, he quickly joined the PPP and immediately became very active in politics in Guyana.
Roger told us back in those days, “I am REALLY impressed with the PYO aggressive approach to political work in the country.”
His soft-spoken demeanor and craftily conveyed words inspire us to work among the youths and students. ‘The good Dr’, as we referred to him, quickly joined others, such as Cde. Gail Teixeira and many others, to bring further credibility and respect to the PPP’s working class leadership.
In the struggle for free and fair elections, particularly after the massive PNC rigging of the 1985 National and Regional Elections, the PPP leadership assigned Dr. Roger Luncheon to its political team working in Region #10. He joined Cde. Samuel Hinds, and the PPP held weekly meetings across the terrain in Region #10. One would recall that he always started conversations by letting listeners know he was a PPP member.
After the Carter Center came to Guyana, we had to do house-to-house work in preparation for the ‘postponed’ 1990 Elections, held two years later, in 1992. He quickly recognized that we had to work in the Berbice and Demerara Rivers. I remember that, in 2011, Roger was struggling to traverse from the boat landing to the meeting place, and he said, “This is most likely my last visit to the river.”
He was appointed Head of the Presidential Secretariat with the PPP/C victory at the polls in 1992. He held that position with five PPP/C Presidents. As a leader of the PPP, he leaves us with a legacy as a good listener, a man who cared for his comrades, and proved that he was a best friend or the equivalent of family.
Roger was indeed a strong team player. After the PPP/C was removed from Government in 2015, he quickly realized that the PPP needed a more aggressive and dynamic leader. Even though the Party’s Executives knew that his best health was fading, they often looked forward to his astute advice, as he continued to play a respected role in the PPP Leadership Team.
Dr. Roger Luncheon often demonstrated his great faith in our General Secretary Dr. Bharrat Jagdeo and the leadership of the PPP. His words of inspiration and encouragement will forever stay in our memories. “Dr,” your legacy will keep us in the PPP/C and Guyana safe and strong together.

Neil Kumar
Sean Richmond