Winston Roy Drysdale (Bela) was born in Fletchers Land, Kingston, Jamaica on February 22, 1942 to Evans and Pearle Drysdale. Baby Roy, as he was affectionately called by family and friends was extremely intelligent, passionate, charismatic, and caring.
After completing his education at All Saints School, Holy Trinity, and later Kingston College, Roy found himself working as a waiter and entertainer on several US cruise ships. His musical talents and striking resemblance to one of his favorite singers Harry Belafonte, coined him the nickname Bela.
In 1965 Bela received a new title which was Hero! As the SS Yarmouth Castle Cruise Ship left Miami, FL heading to the Bahamas a fire broke out in the early hours of the morning. Although tired from the days work, Bela sprung into action, saving as many individuals as he could and was the last person to leave the ship just before it sunk. As a result, of his bravery Bela received national recognition from Life Magazine, the NAACP, and the Marine Society. Despite all of this, Bela never cared about being praised as a hero he was just passionate about helping others.
Shortly there after, Bela and his long-time girlfriend, Lelith officially migrated to the US to start a family. In 1982 they welcomed their daughter Whitney, who was their only child and the joy of his life.
While in the US Bela served as the personal driver to distinguished business man, Henry Dormann and several other political figures. He later went on to own several businesses throughout New York City and quickly made a name for himself on the social scene. He was known to host some of the most exclusive events in NYC most notably, his Independence Day yacht party where he debuted a talented singer by the name of Whitney Houston thus helping to catapult her career.
Needless to say, Bela lived an incredible life full of adventure and zest. He had a great sense of humor, loved to tell stories about his experiences and debate current events (very loudly) with his friends and family. He was a wonderful cook and an incredible father. He will be greatly missed.
Bela is predeceased by his Father and Mother Evans and Pearle Drysdale, his Sisters- Geraldine Hudson and Sonia Drysdale. And Survived by his Daughter Whitney Forbes, his Sisters – Valdine Drysdale-Ellis, Fay Small, Lorna Godfrey, Donna (Patrick) Lindsay, Patricia Drysdale, his Brothers – Barrington Drysdale, Paul (Margaret) Drysdale, Peter Drysdale and a host of nieces, nephews, cousins, and friends.
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