This morning we receive the sad news that one of our very own, Tarania "Plum Plum" Clarke passed away due to a stabbing incident in Half-Way Tree in Kingston Jamaica.
Tarania was a member of the senior Reggae Girlz and received her first call up with the senior national team during the 2019 Panamerican games in Lima. She received her first senior cap and scored her first senior goal versus Cuba during the pre-qualification phase of the Concacaf Women's Olympic Qualifying Tournament.
Her first international match was during Concacaf's U15 Girls Championship in 2014 where she scored a goal in the 47th minute versus Belize. Since then, participated has in all youth levels by representing the Reggae Girlz at U15, U17, and U20 levels.
At a club level, she was the Captain for Waterhouse, the 2018 champions of the Jamaican Women's Premier League, where she played a crucial role as a lethal striker and leading them to victory.
"Tarania was such a good kid. Definitely had a future in our program. It's so unfortunate." - Head Coach Hue Menzies
Plum Plum was a sweet girl that cared about her community, a "people person" as her mother described her. Clarke was just getting ready to leave Jamaica to attend Daytona State University in Florida, an NJCAA University where she received acceptance. She was set to start in January, however she was short two months of getting there.
"This is really a tough one because she was looking for big things. This was her year for change and a catalyst for her to peak, her shining years. For us it's really disheartening." - Sherona Forrester, former Reggae Girl to the Jamaican Gleaner
Clarke was one of several Jamaican players that used the beautiful game to provide for their family and a way to excel from their current difficult situation. Khadija Shaw, Jody Brown, Konya Plummer, Trudi Carter, Sashana Campbell, and Deneisha Blackwood are some other Reggae Girlz who have used football as a tool for education, a tool for social change, and to grow as people as well.
We at Fútbol Ace send our condolences to the Reggae Girlz and Tarania's family. May she rest in peace.