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Jamaica deaths: Manchester couple ‘dreamed’ of move

Gayle and Charlie Anderson Image copyright Anderson family
Image caption Gayle and Charlie Anderson were described as “pillars of the community”

Two British grandparents suspected of being murdered in Jamaica had “dreamed” of moving there, neighbours have said.

Charlie Anderson, 74, and his wife Gayle, 71, from Gorton, Manchester, were found dead after recently retiring to the Caribbean island.

Their former neighbours said the couple had “saved all their lives” to afford a large house on the island, which Mr Anderson had built himself.

Their sons said in a statement they were “completely devastated”.

The couple, who were also known as Halford and Florence and had been married for 55 years, lived in a rural community in Hope Bay, Portland, on the north-east of the island.

They were found dead by neighbours in their home in Mount Pleasant on Friday afternoon.

They had moved to the island a year ago with Mr Anderson, a builder, returning to his homeland.

Mrs Anderson, a supermarket worker, and her husband sold their house and used savings to fund their new retirement life, friends have said.

Image copyright Anderson family handout
Image caption Charlie Anderson and his wife Gayle on their wedding day

John Carrigan, 54, who knew the couple for more than 20 years, said: “Charles came over to Britain with just a satchel and made a life for himself by working hard.

“It was their dream to move back to Jamaica and own their own home there. They saved all their lives and sold their house here so they could retire there. It’s terrible what’s happened to them.”

High murder rate

It has been reported locally they had recently called in police to investigate money they said had been fraudulently taken from a credit card.

Neighbour Charles Burey said: “He told me about money which was taken either from his account or his [wife’s].”

Image copyright TVJ
Image caption Gayle and Charlie Anderson’s home in Jamaica

Jamaican police revealed their house had been set on fire, and the couple suffered neck and face injuries.

Spokesperson Throyville Haughton said: “Their house was partially burnt; however, one room was totally destroyed by fire.

“We observed… injuries to their neck and faces; however, we are not able to say at this time what caused these injuries.”

The couple’s deaths come as Jamaican authorities seek to tackle a crime wave which has resulted in more than 1,600 murders in 2017.

So far this year more than 600 people have been killed.

‘Terrible tragedy’

In a statement, the couple’s sons said they were “pillars of the community”.

They said: “They were hard-working people, building a business with integrity and making sure we were always provided for.

“They were just beginning the next chapter of their lives, retiring to Jamaica before this terrible tragedy.”

Flower

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