Stabbing victim’s son recalls father as caring parent and upstanding business owner
Daniel Corbett, of British Columbia, Canada, contacted the Yucatan Times to request publication of this letter regarding his father, Roger Corbett, who died in Chicxulub Puerto in November 2016. A second Canadian, Brian Slater, has been arrested by Yucatan authorities in connection with Roger Corbett’s death and is awaiting trial, expected to begin this summer. Under Mexican law, a criminal defendant is innocent until proven guilty.
On the thirteenth of November, a horrible event took place that has affectively sent ripples throughout our family and community. Roger Corbett was a son, brother, father, uncle and a cousin who was taken from us far too soon, and in such a brutal manner.
On November 14th when we received the news of his murder, we were informed that an altercation had occurred on the evening of the incident, hours after Roger Corbett and his close friend arrived in Chicxulub, Mexico; Allegedly Brian Slater selfishly made the choice to take my dad, Roger Corbett from us. We still don’t know why this happened and possibly never will.
Official documentation from international affairs suggests that Brian Slater, with military knowledge and without hesitation, aggressively attacked Roger Corbett targeting two vital organs with the same knife that Brian had used to cut limes for the margarita’s they had been drinking.
Defenseless and leaning on a wall, my dad had nowhere to go, and succumbed quickly to Brian’s savage attack. In less than a minute my father took his last breath and slowly closed his eyes for the last time in the arms of his friend, the primary witness. Our family’s lives have been forever changed as a result of Brian Slater’s alleged hostile and irreversible decision.
There was more than one reason for my dad’s trip to Mexico. First and foremost, he wanted to take a break from his very successful painting company, Corbett’s Painting Ltd., and enjoy the sun and beaches. Something he never got to do. The other reason Roger had been invited to Mexico by Brian was to assist him financially and invest in his late father’s home, providing a vacation destination for Roger’s family, friends and employees. My Dad was always willing to help people in any way he could.
My dad embraced life as a son, a brother to four siblings, and a proud father to me and my three brothers. He was an uncle, cousin, nephew, boss and friend to many people – too many to list in this statement. He was a man of character, conviction and faith. It is obvious that this horrific crime allegedly executed by Brian Slater has changed our lives forever, and this ripple effect of grief has become a tidal wave when you consider all those affected by his murder.
My intention for creating a fundraiser for my late father is for the purpose of having a financial foundation for any and all costs attached to an international murder case. Our Canadian government offers some financial support, but it is limited covering only basic costs pertaining to death and victim support. I foresee the total costs of this murder far exceeding what is currently provided.
Due to the extreme nature of this international murder trial, countless costs are having to come out of my families personal resources and my minor brother’s yet-to-be trust funds.
The expenses thus far include:
-Lawyer fee’s within Canada as my father was a company owner who had no will to date and unsecured insurances because of his legal separation from his ex-wife. A mortgage is still needing to be paid, or the house that my father built himself will have to be sold.
-Travel expenses for myself and my family. I have had to personally travel to Mexico to meet with the prosecution, media, and consulate officials once already. It is guaranteed I will have to go back for the official murder trial this summer (July or August 2017)
-Additional costs with regards to retrieving my father’s body and belongings.
-Grief support for my brothers and family. The government has allotted a small amount of finances for each four of my father’s children, including myself, though these expenses could go beyond the government funds, as counselling may last for years to come.
For donations, click on the following link: https://www.gofundme.com/rogercorbett
I want to secure a strong financial future for my three younger brothers, so any additional funding raised that is not used to support the immediate cause will be placed into trust funds for my three brothers who are all under the age of 16. Their future has yet to begin and without our father, who was our financial and moral support, I wish to create a foundation for their future educational pursuits.
This fundraiser is intended to last until the end of this tragic murder trial. My father waits in Mexico to be laid to rest where he belongs, at home in Victoria, British Columbia, Canada.
The unmarked grave site in Mexico for my father until his murder trial concludes with a jail sentence for the accused. The Corbett family has no closure at this current point. We will bring you home soon, Dad!
by Daniel Corbett
Eldest Son of the late Roger Corbett
The views and opinions contained in this letter to the editor reflect those of the writer and not necessarily those of The Yucatan Times.