Crime a thing of the past for 'Ziggy' Haywood

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Crime a thing of the past for 'Ziggy' Haywood

Annotto Bay entrepreneur now running car wash business; eyes auto parts sales, farming

BY KIMBERLEY HIBBERT
Senior staff reporter
hibbertk@jamaicaobserver.com

Sunday, August 09, 2020

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CALVIN “Ziggy” Haywood has lived a life of crime but through rehabilitation and the work of Icons of Annotto Bay, a St Mary-based youth intervention group, among other things, Haywood is focused on helping wayward youth in his community stay on the right path.

When the Jamaica Observer caught up with Haywood last week Wednesday at a back-to-school medical fair organised by Icons of Annotto Bay, he spoke freely of his childhood and his dreams of becoming a shoemaker.

Before learning the trade, Haywood dabbled in diving and fishing as his livelihood, as he had dropped out of Annotto Bay All Age in grade eight at 16 years old and relied on street knowledge to survive.

This street knowledge would result in Haywood mixing with the wrong crowd, and by the time he turned 20, things took an ugly turn.

“I got involved with some men and got locked up for a robbery at a furniture store. I got locked up for receiving stolen goods. My brother came from abroad and quarrelled with me and said no one in the family is thief. I feel so shame and that's where he asked me what I wanted to do, what trade I wanted to learn, and that's how I got into the shoemaker trade,” Haywood told the Sunday Observer.

But that was not the end of his troubles, as in addition to his charges for theft, Haywood was also slapped with a murder charge, wounding with intent and charges for robbery.

He, however, admitted that he was no saint, as he was hot-headed and would often act on impulse.

“When mi did young mi did kinda foolish. By growing mi find out seh some tings no mek any sense. When time mi young, a man couldn't talk to mi any and any how enuh. Mi ignorant and dark, mi a cut up all people. Mi charge fi wounding and dem thing deh. Mi cut up people fi true man. Dem ting deh never did really good,” Haywood said.

He added: “Mi go prison too and know seh prison a back a time. I went and saw a friend and he told me, 'The two a wi no fi deh yah, mi no wah see yuh back,' and dat a when mi start pree seh prison is nowhere fi nobody. Mi know seh badness no pay [and] honesty is the way,” Haywood said.

And so, the 39-year-old decided to turn his life around through his car wash, which he operates in Annotto Bay.

“One of my friends give mi some chemicals and show mi how fi clean car seat, and then another friend father gave me a power wash and said try life. I had no vacuum and a taxi man beg mi wash and clean his car and asked me where is the vacuum and I said mi no have any. Him give me a vacuum and that's how I start. People did even say it nah go gwan and three weeks after getting the power wash it mash up. But the following week, I got another power wash and from around 2008 to about 2009 that's what I live off, “ he said.

In addition, Haywood provides employment for many youth in Annotto Bay, but he is very strict when it comes to dishonesty.

“Many of the youths I try to give work there and try to change them...some are finger-fearing, but if you steal even a pen from out of my customer's vehicle it come een like a me you tief from – eventually yuh a rob mi. If you do supmn wrong, I make yuh go and try with someone else. When mi see dem a fuss and fight dem one annedda, I say stop it. War is not a nice thing,” he said.

Haywood, who is married, says he hopes to start a family one day, but for now he is focused on expanding his business to include a store that sells car parts and accessories, like brake fluid and engine oil. He also has plans to help youngsters get into farming as a means to earn and stay out of trouble.


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