One beautiful evening in Harlow, England, at 9: 00 PM, February 6, 2006, to be exact, a beautiful, chubby baby was born to Wilmoth Andy Shillingford and his wife, Angeline. This precious child came with a vision to be a changer, a mover, and a shaker. Ashley and her family moved to Grand Cayman, where her parents were stationed, when she was six months old and was the joy of all who came in contact with her, particularly her caregiver, Yvonne Slater.
Ashley was energetic, strong-willed, determined, assertive, and flashy and as she developed, she demonstrated positive qualities that showed her excellence in analyzing, understanding, and learning. She was somewhat an introvert who tended to be quiet and introspective.
Ashley’s days were always overcharged with her many activities – music, gymnastics, swimming, and netball. She was the social coordinator for her friends and promotor of West Bay Youth Sabbath School a group which included Alyssa, Zaniah, Michaela, and Ashley. She possessed the zeal and drive to empower and encourage her peers to develop a deeper relationship with the Lord through the study of His Word. She was a ‘Big’ sister to students in the kindergarten and Miss Lorna Harris’ Year Three class. Added, she was the inspirational motivator for Squad Five, a group which included Anastacia, Ciara, Yulande and herself, and ‘Little’ sister to Yarrick and Shamar. Lately, she became engaged in photography and looked forward to covering the world through her photos and her creative exploits.
Ashley also had a passion for languages and was looking forward to our family cruise to the Mediterranean, come June this year, when she would learn and gain first-hand experience about different cultures and languages.
Ashley loved life and her passion was chatting ceaselessly on her phone with her friends Tianna, Anastacia, Renee, Ocean, James, and ‘Big’ sister, Thalia. She loved doing Tiktoks. She was obsessed with her hair and was consistently trying styles and experimenting with products to keep beautiful and healthy. She knew how to hold on to what she believed in any debate and hardly gave up even when she knew her opponent had the upper hand. Ashley confided in me telling me that she was shy and did not like to speak out in public. My response was, “If what you say is true, Ashes, I wouldn’t want to face you when you became the prolific and masterful lawyer you are going to be.”
Ashley touched the lives of many people during her short life. Among them are her
- Parents, Andy and Angeline Shillingford
- Sister Renee Alexis Shillingford
- Her grandparents, Sylvester and Janet Joseph, and yours truly, Beverley Shillingford
- Great grandmothers – Denise Zamore in Orlando, and Margretan Francis in St. Joseph, Dominica
- Aunts – Marcella Joseph Galloway, Desaline Joseph Simon, Ann Shillingford-Butler, Nadine Shillingford Wondem, Tamica Shillingford Sutton
- Uncles – Henok Wondem, Kent Butler, Joseph Sutton, Brian Simon, and Daryl Galloway
- 10 grand-aunts and 5 grand-uncles in Dominica, St. Kitts, USA, and England
- 75 Cousins including Hailey Wondem and DeMari Burton-Cutliffe, her camp partners, Amy Simon and Charmaine Galloway in England,
- Staff and students at Cayman Academy
- Pastor and members of the Savanna and West Bay Seventh-day Adventist Church
- Caregiver Yvonne Slater
- Friends, too many to mention.
As you can see, she did not live to be the lawyer, the Firm of Shillingford & Lyn, Barristers at Law, she was planning with Anna, neither did she achieve her dream to follow Psychology and Counseling on the side, but she held many sessions as she debated with her parents, her aunts, and her peers to get them to understand and agree with her views. Let us cherish the memories we hold of our dear daughter, granddaughter, sister, niece, and friend,
The Awesome Ashley Jessica Shillingford; her remains were laid to rest 26 September 2020.