Errol "Bushi" Holder, 60, remembers playing cricket on Duncan Street in the 70s with Dr Alvin Hilaire, who grew up to become T&T's Central Bank Governor.
He recalls the glory days of East Port-of-Spain which has also produced a former prime minister; George Chambers, who grew up on Duke Street; former minister of finance, Gerald Yetming, from St Paul Street; two former national security ministers John Sandy, Duncan Street and Martin Joseph, Nelson Street; and former chief justice Clinton Bernard.
The trend still continues with representation from residents in various spheres in politics such as newly appointed Minister of Communications Donna Cox, (Nelson Street), sports, science, culture, community service, and business.
Now, many people more associate George, Nelson and Duncan Streets with gang warfare, drugs and violence than its talented sons and daughters.
Holder was speaking nonchalantly to Guardian Media on Monday with a bullet hole in the wall two feet to his left and two more bullet holes in the glass windows at his tailor shop on the corner of Queen and Nelson Streets, Port-of-Spain, that came from errant shots from upper Duncan Street.
Holder said "I've been a tailor for 48 years, what I would really like for us is to get a community centre in the area. In my time growing up around here as a kid, sports, education and learning a trade was the hour of the day.
"It was really nice, we weren't thinking about violence, it hurts my heart to see what is going on now. Long time we could play football in the river, we used to run from police playing cricket and football in the street.
"We could walk up Nelson Street, jump in the river to go Gonzales and play football in the night. We can't do that any longer because of the vagrants living in the river and we might catch a disease."
"It's a shame to see how the place has become. I'm calling on the youths because they can do better than that."
Describing himself as a "protégé of Applejackers," one of the gangs of Port-of-Spain in the 60s. He said those long-time gang members in gangs such as the Law Breakers, Silk Hats, Sun Valley, Fallen Angels, Commandos, Thunderbirds and steelband gangs Renegades and Desperadoes had a code of ethics addressing elders in their community with respect.
Holder said those long-time "Badjohns" also helped women and seniors with their bags, and protected members of the community.
He said people like Teddy, Furlong, Tepool, Fats, and Armin Smith gave him and other children money to buy sucker bags and money to buy balls to play sports.
Holder said his friends in the community such as Samuel Thongs, Neil Wilson, himself, Steve Baptiste, Terry Moore, Kendon Joachim, Lincon Griffith, Rocky Stowe, Marcus and Hayden Bernard John and Albert Sandy were hurt seeing how the place they came from or still called home had lost something precious.
He called on the Government to take heed of the situation and work with the people to help bring about positive change.