A Message To Our CommunityPress Release: March 30, 2019
It is with infinite sorrow, emotion and anger that the Hand in Hand for Haiti Foundation, and the school, Jean Baptiste Pointe du Sable de Saint-Marc, announce the death of Mr. Filipe Fernandes.
Mr. Fernandes was attacked cowardly by bandits on the morning of Thursday, March 28 near the school. He was rushed to Saint-Nicolas hospital in Saint-Marc, where he died of his wounds. The Hand in Hand for Haiti Foundation and the school, Jean-Baptiste Pointe du Sable send sincere condolences to his wife Karen Fernandes, his father, Fr. Joâo Fernandes, his sisters Anabel Vieira and Lidia Cardoso Dos Reis Fernandes.
Filipe Fernandes was an architect and a Portuguese national who lived in the US. Since 2010, he dedicated his talent and passion to the construction and maintenance of the Jean Baptiste Pointe du Sable school campus, located in Pont Léocan, just outside the city of Saint-Marc. On March 28th, he was in Haiti to oversee the construction of the high school buildings that were to finalize the campus.
Filipe made Haiti his second home. He loved the country and its people and had planted roots there. He made numerous trips between Texas and Saint-Marc to supervise all campus construction and maintenance.
Since 2010, he employed and trained dozens of workers in Saint-Marc. Sadly, it was on his way back from a bank in Saint-Marc, where he made a withdrawal to pay the wages of his employees on the worksite, that he was cowardly gunned down by criminals.
By doing so, they not only stole Filipe’s life, causing unimaginable loss to his family and his many friends, but they also seriously endangered the jobs of these workers, the mission of the teachers and other employees and the hope of the students and families of Saint-Marc who benefit from the school and foundation.
This brutal and senseless event is all the more shocking because it targeted a foreign national who came to Haiti to dedicate himself, body and soul, to building a world-class school to serve our students and the community.
The death of Filipe Fernandes is an immeasurable loss for the Hand in Hand for Haiti Foundation, and the school, Jean-Baptiste Pointe du Sable. It is also a terrible loss for Haiti.
Filipe’s work will not be forgotten.
We wish that this great soul full of kindness and compassion may rest in peace.
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Hand in Hand for Haiti
100 United Nations Plaza, 43D
New York, NY 10017
Pointe du Sable
Route Nationale #1 Pont-Leocan