Popular Jamaican TV producer Eion “Dreadless Ras” Saunders died unexpectedly Thursday, Dec. 27 at Beth Israel Hospital in Brooklyn. The cause of death was not revealed.
Sanders, 47, was the founder of ZYNC TV/NEW YORK LINKZ, a popular show focused on news and entertainment in the Caribbean Diaspora.
Saunders also acted as producer, writer, director and host. He leaves behind his wife, Cheryl, children Sheneil, Kai, Jadeion and Krispin, mother, Lois Thompson, father Annon Saunders, sister Sandee.
Cheryl Saunders, wife of Eion Saunders was speechless: “This is such a shock to us. His girls miss him so much and my heart hurts at his passing. However, I am heartened by the love and support from the community and all his friends and colleagues who have reached out to me and the girls. Eion is gone but he will never be forgotten!”
Saunders’ brother, Courtney and his wife Karen, nephews Ian, Tyler, Tannon, and Taron and niece Tattiana were all overcome with grief..
“Our hearts grieve at his untimely passing,” Eion’s sister, Sandee Saunders told Caribbean Life.”He was our beloved!” Lois Thompson, Eion mother, stated. “Though we are sad at the loss of my son, we are encouraged by the outpouring of love and support from the community he has served sodiligently over all these years. Thank you!!!
Saunders became prominent after his launching from CIN with Whatz Up TV and later for his branching out to create ZYNC TV. He later moved on to airing on Tempo TV after his show was canned along with several others from the Diaspora by Stephen Hill, of CIN.ZYNC TV/NEW YORK LINKZ aired every Friday from 7:00 p.m. on Cablevision Ch.1105 in New York, New Jersey, Connecticut and Pennsylvania and throughout the Caribbean.
The television magazine- styled show focused on news and entertainment within the Caribbean Diaspora.
For his work, Saunders received many awards of recognition, including from the Caribbean American Outreach Association (NY), Jampact, and Council member Jumaane Williams.
“His passing came as a complete shock to all of us who have fond memories of him,” City Councilmember Jumaane D. Williams, told Caribbean Life. “He, clearly, understood that Caribbean culture wasn’t always given a voice in mainstream media, and he took it upon himself to change that,” the councilman noted.
The showÂ¹s many contributors included Catcha Fyah, Coral King, Richie Rich, DJ Noah, DJ Hypeness, Shermain Jeremy, Keishel Williams, Donna Mason and Courtney “Mr. Mention” Mitchell.
Bevan Springer, the Barbadian-born president of the New Jersey-based Caribbean Media Exchange (CMEx), said Saunders will be missed in the Caribbean and in the Diaspora. “His commitment, passion and dedication will be missed,” Springer added. “We now pray for his family and loved ones during this difficult time. May he rest in peace.”
Maxine Nolan of the New York-based Pure Fame Media/Forever Reggae TV and DC Digital said to Saunders’ family: “Our most heartfelt sympathies for your loss. Our thoughts are with you during this difficult time.“Although it’s difficult today to see beyond the sorrow, may looking back in memory help comfort you tomorrow.” She added: “Death leaves a heartache no one can heal. Love leaves a memory no one can steal. May your hearts and souls find comfort, peace and blessings.”
A Wake and Viewing will take place on Sunday, January 6 at GRACE Funeral Chapel, 607 North Conduit Boulevard in Brooklyn. Viewing will take place from 2:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m and the Wake and Service will be from 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m.
A repast will follow at Tropical Paradise Ballroom, 1367 Utica Ave. (between Foster Avenue and Farragut Road) Brooklyn, from 8:00 p.m. until Midnight.
The Funeral Service is scheduled for Monday, Jan. 7 at 8:00 a.m. at Kings Highway United Methodist Church, 1387 East 37th St. (corner of Kings Highway) Brooklyn. A repast will follow from 3:00 p.m until 8:00 p.m. at Pulse 48 (formerly CPAC) 1020 East 48th St. in Brooklyn.
In lieu of flowers, donations to an education fund established for his surviving children will be gratefully accepted. Please make donations payable to Eion Saunders c/o Coalition to Preserve Reggae Music, Inc., 1199 Ocean Ave., Suite 407, Brooklyn, New York 11230.
For further information email [email protected].