Maurice was born on May 29th, 1944 on the island of Aruba to Grenadian parents, Rupert and Alimenta Bishop. The Bishops returned to Grenada in 1950 and Maurice, then six years-old, was enrolled in Wesley Hall Primary School.

A year later, he moved to the St. George’s Roman Catholic Primary school where he won one of the few scholarship then offered to attend a secondary school. That was in 1956, on that scholarship, he when on in 1957 to the Roman Catholic Presentation College.

In his final years of secondary education, Maurice decided he wanted to study law and when he left Presentation College in 1963 also he worked for a few months at the Registry in Grenada before leaving for England.

Maurice gained a degree at London University’s Holborn College of Law. He then began postgraduate work at King’s College, in the field of Grenada’s constitutional development, but left to take up employment in the British civil Service as a surtax examiner.

In 1969, he returned to the Inns of Court and successfully completed his final bar examination, returning to Grenada in March 1970, where he went into private Practice.

Responding to the Grenada’s situation in 1973, Maurice formed M.A.P (Movement for Assemblies of the People) and in the same year, merged MAP with another political group formed and led by his colleague, Unison Whiteman. Whiteman’s group had the name Joint action for Education Welfare and Liberation (JEWEL), the out come was the formation of the New Jewel Movement (NJM).

In 1976, Maurice was elected to the House of Representatives and became leader of the Opposition, a post he held until March 13th 1979, when he led an armed, almost bloodless revolution and seized power of the Government. During his time as leader of the revolution, his People’s Revolutionary Government (PRG) made great achievements in the fields of Education, Medical services, workers rights, women’s rights, co-operatives, Political awareness, land development, infrastructure and started the International Airport (which one day should (will) be named in his honor).

The Central Committee of the Revolutionary Government placed Maurice under house arrest on October 18th 1983. He was freed by the Grenadian people and then taken to the army’s headquarters on Fort Rupert, where he was later ambushed and assaulted by a detachment of the People’s Revolutionary Army (PRA). He was executed on October 19th 1983, along with Norris Bain, Fitzroy Bain, Jacqueline Creft, Unison Whiteman, Vincent Noel and countless other Grenadians. This set the stage for a U.S Invasion of Grenada on October 25th, 1983. Maurice Bishop will remain one of Grenada’s Fallen National Heroes and has rightfully earned his place amongst the many outstanding Men and Women. He is an authentic hero to oppressed peoples all over the world. In his words “FORWARD EVER BACKWARD NEVER”.

 

 

By Omel (2001)

 

~Sources of information: Hansib. ISBN 1-870518-29-2 and other publications, Photo by Maxine Townsend-Broderick~