Col. Michael Shahoud remembered as a ‘tower of strength’
As the nation continues to mourn the loss of five of its exemplary servicemen, President Dr Mohamed Irfaan Ali has hailed the fallen Colonel Michael Shahoud as a tower of strength, and a reinforcing shoulder in times of need.
He made these remarks during his tribute to the officer at the funeral ceremony at the Brickdam Cathedral, Georgetown on Friday morning.
Col. Shahoud was one of the five servicemen who died in the recent helicopter crash during a command mission to deliver supplies to troops. He was Commander of the 1st Infantry Battalion and an attorney-at-law.
President Ali commended the fallen hero’s fierce loyalty and level-headed leadership, adding that Shahoud led by example, balancing strict leadership with empathy and compassion.
“He cultivated a culture where discipline was not just a rule, but a way of life. Yet, he was no autocrat, instead of wielding authority with an iron fist, he balanced discipline with empathy, fostering mutual respect and understanding,” he said.
The president recalled that this empathy and humanness took centre stage during a recent visit to Arau, during which Col. Shahoud took on the responsibility of serving as a role model for the village, keeping personal contact with the leaders and residents to lend continuous support.
“He said to us that he will see to it that they personally get what they needed, individually, and as a community. The love and empathy Mike had for Guyanese and for this country is not only remarkable, it is worth celebrating,” the commander-in-chief recalled.
According to President Ali, he was the epitome of loyalty, a humble man, and a trusted advisor.
Given the versatility, proficiency, and unwavering loyalty that characterised Shahoud’s contributions to Guyana, President Ali said that his memory would serve as a symbol of nationhood.
He added that Michael Shahoud has left behind a legacy that will live in the hearts and minds of Guyanese, and this memory will only strengthen as time passes.
“Brave men and women will be inspired by his example, and his son will grow up and be proud of his father,” he said.