Donna Haynes, the voice actor extraordinaire, who voiced not only for Digicel but for many radio and TV commercials for the Jamaica Tourist Board (JTB), among others, has died.
Haynes died last Thursday (November 24).
Haynes also served as Master of Ceremonies at functions for the Jamaica Hotel and Tourist Association (JHTA) for many years.
The JHTA, in a release, said Haynes was the MC at its annual Awards of Excellence for decades.
“She touched millions of Jamaicans with her talent and wonderful voice in various radio and television advertisements and commentaries. We will miss her charming smile, calm demeanour and perfect diction”, the release stated.
Meanwhile, Director of Tourism Jamaica, Donovan White, described Haynes as “a talented professional who was a pleasure to work with”.
“On behalf of the board of management and staff, I wish to extend condolences to Donna’s family and friends at this difficult time. Donna was professional, talented and a pleasure to work with. She will be missed,” White said.
She was a voice actor who applied her talent to many of the JTB’s international campaigns.
Haynes’ most recent work with the JTB was lending her voice to the “Jamaica: Heartbeat of the World” global campaign that launched right before the COVID-19 pandemic, the JTB said.
Several comments on Facebook on Haynes’ passing described her as having a “charming and delightful personality” and as a “most thoughtful and caring soul”.
A graduate of Immaculate Conception High School in 1976, Haynes was also a teacher at Alvernia Preparatory School and St Joseph Teachers College for some time.
A staunch Roman Catholic, Haynes’ impressive singing voice also featured in the Stella Maris Church choir.
Long-time friend and colleague Carol Taylor, station administrator Roots 96. 1 FM, was “still in shock” at the passing of Haynes, who once served as general manager at the community station.
“Aunty Donna was a perfectionist when it came to the English language, but even when she was correcting you, she never made you feel she was above you”, Taylor told Loop News.
Taylor recalled Haynes addressing nine and 10-year-olds as “Mr Brown, Mr Hamilton, or Miss Gooden” at Alvernia Prep years ago, which made the children feel special.
“The kids were just excited just to be around her, as she made them know how important they were”, Taylor said.
Haynes also narrated the programme Catholic Radio on Roots FM.