Published: Oct 25, 2023


ST. THOMAS – The 35th Legislature’s Committee on Government Operations, Veterans Affairs, and Consumer Protection, chaired by Senator Carla J. Joseph, convened in a meeting at the Capitol Building. Lawmakers voted in the affirmative for bills to honor and commend the late Myron Corbett by renaming a basketball court “The Myron Corbett Basketball Court,” Dr. Alfred O. Heath by constructing and erecting a bronze statue, and Aliyah Boston for her achievements in women’s basketball. All approved items will be forwarded to the Committee on Rules and Judiciary for further consideration.

Lawmakers voted and approved Bill No. 35-0027- An Act honoring and commending Mr. Myron Corbett posthumously for his many contributions to the youth of the Territory; renaming the basketball court located in Anna’s Retreat, St. Thomas, Virgin Islands, as “The Myron Corbett Basketball Court;” making an appropriation to erect signage at the basketball court; and for other related purposes. This bill is sponsored by Senators Donna A. Frett Gregory, Marvin A. Blyden, and Ray Fonseca. Senator Frett-Gregory noted that Corbett came from a family of athletes that contributed to the athletic field in the Virgin Islands, specifically to the St. Thomas-St. John District. Corbett held numerous positions as a coach, athletic director, and advocate for youth. He has done a lot for young people in the Virgin Islands.

One resident, Omari Peterkin, said that Corbett’s exceptional teaching abilities enabled him to play basketball in many parts of the world, experiencing many cultures, languages, and faiths while making friends for life. Myron Corbett’s niece, Shayla Solomon, said that her uncle’s steadfast commitment to quality and exceptional work ethic extended to all facets of his civic, professional, and community activity. According to Senator Joseph, Corbett had a strong sense of moral conviction. Omari Peterkin and Kaylen Gregory, two former pupils, demonstrate that Corbett’s efforts were not in vain.

Similarly, senators voted in favorably for Bill No. 35-0123- An Act to commission and direct the Virgin Islands Council on the Arts to construct and erect a bronze bust of Dr. Alfred O. Heath to be placed next to those of Edith L. Williams, J. Antonio Jarvis, and Rothschild Francis in Education Park on the island of St. Thomas, and for other purposes. This bill is sponsored by Senator Ray Fonseca. Dr. Sidney Commissiong, a former colleague, mentioned how outstanding Dr. Heath’s resume is. Within the Virgin Islands Healthcare System, he has occupied several senior roles, including staff surgeon. Dr. Cora Christian weighed in and advised healthcare administrators to push for the provision of senior-friendly healthcare facilities. Dr. Heath’s wish was realized, although Seaview, an assisted living facility, subsequently closed for budgetary concerns. Alfred O. Heath, MD, dedicated his life to serving the most vulnerable members of the Virgin Islands community, and his vision came to an end with the closure of The Sea View Nursing Home and Rehabilitation Facility and the St. Thomas Health Care Management Adolescent Program. 

Lastly, policymakers voted in the affirmative for Bill No. 35-0091- A Resolution honoring and commending Aliyah Boston for her many accomplishments in girl’s and women’s basketball, her contribution as an ambassador for the Territory, and her contribution to women’s sports worldwide, and awarding her the Key to the Territory. This bill is sponsored by Senators Marvin A. Blyden and Angel L. Bolques, Jr., and co-sponsored by Senator Marise C. James. Aliyah’s mother, Cleone Boston, shared a glimpse of her daughter’s personality and said that her love and devotion for people is unrivaled, regardless of their status, title, or place in life. Seeing the best in everyone, Aliyah shows her neighbors the same consideration and decency that she shows herself. In a written testimony submitted to the Legislature, Head women’s basketball coach Dawn Staley of the University of South Carolina said that Aliyah stands out from the competition not just because of her remarkable athletic ability but also because of her amazing sportsmanship and leadership abilities. She is not only a superb performer but also a real team player who never hesitates to encourage and assist her colleagues.

Senators present at the committee meeting are Carla Joseph, Kenneth L. Gittens, Dwayne M. DeGraff, Marvin A. Blyden, Donna Frett-Gregory, Milton E. Potter, Angel L. Bolques, Jr., Javan E. James, Sr., Ray Fonseca, Alma Francis Heyliger, Diane T. Capehart, Novelle Francis, Jr., and Franklin D. Johnson.

The Division of Public Affairs is committed to providing accurate information about legislative proceedings and other events at the Virgin Islands Legislature.


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December 2023

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