In Memory of my Father
It was around 8pm on that fateful day, 30th of September 1989, a day that changed everything about me, reshaped my destiny and exposed me to the dangers of the world. I was only 13years but every morning and night i prayed for my sick Father...
“Jesus please heal my Daddy, be with him and give your Angels charge over him, do not allow him to be sick again, please bless him and keep him strong for me”. I prayed.
One of my elder brothers came that night to visit me because i was leaving with a family friend, i saw his eyes when i asked about our Dad because he has been caring for him in the hospital, he told me that our Dad was doing great and sent him to tell me that he will be fine. I smiled while he hid his face then the next day i woke up strong knowing that i will go and visit my Dad at the hospital as planned with my brother but i had a mission to undertake that day. It was the 1st day of October and as the patrol leader of the 23rd division, i needed to be at the field with my fellow scout. I went back home after the joyful parade of my division and every school that participated in the independence day celebration but was disappointed when i realized that my brother had come to the house and left.
I didn’t understand why he failed to wait for me when he told me just last night that Dad was desperate to see me, why didn’t he tell me in the night not to go for parade? All the unanswered questions that were processing in my brain gave me just one option, to go down to my family house and onward to the hospital with whoever that will be in the house because the hospital was in another town. Walking down the road leading to my house with all eyes on me didn’t tell me anything then as i was approaching our family house, my first cousin and one other elder brother came walking out, i was happy when i saw them and without any pleasantry, i asked about my Daddy. He is fine they told me but instead of allowing me to walk into the house, they both asked me to escort them to our Uncle’s place. To me, they were in sane because i wanted to see my Dad and they are not getting me but i was only 13 and had to obey.
Walking to our Uncle’s house which was just a stone throw from our own house, we met a family friend, he wasn’t happy with the situation and wanted to show his sadness but he never knew that the little boy in the company was not aware of the sad event. “Uncle Ralph was a great man”. He said and God will grant him eternal rest. I understood the body language but the emotion in his voice was strong to break down the barriers holding the hidden tears on the eyes of my elder brother and Cousin. Honestly, i didn’t understand why they were crying and calling my Daddy’s name but taking a good sight at my Uncle’s house knocked me down. Everyone i sighted earlier and thought that they were having a meeting was actually crying.
“A big Iroko has fallen” my Uncle cried.
I understood that my Dad passed away the previous day and after depositing his remains in the mortuary, my elder bros came over to see me. I saw my Mum in her weakness for the first time, she looked at me and tried to hold her tears but could not and once again, i begged God on behalf of my father...
“Father, please bring back my father, if not for me then please Jesus bring him back for my mother”.
Today marked the twenty fifth year of my Late Father’s demise from this planet Earth, 30th of September 1989, the day that brought out the new me and proved what my late Dad always told me to be true... “In life, you are alone in your Journey and the way you make your bed so shall you lie on it”. I learned a lot from my Late Father, i learned to a good boy, to be respectful and to love and help others, i learned to be humble, kind and polite, i learned to believe only in myself and above all things; i learned that honesty is the key to success.
Daddy it’s been a while but you are safe up there
It took me time to understood why he took you
I never knew the pain you were nursing
I never knew how difficult a sick bed was
But when i finally understood why he took you
I prayed and thanked him for giving you rest
The legacy you left is still clear in our lives
You fought a noble course and won all your battles
And even in death, you will always be my best friend
My one and only hero, superman
In the Loving and evergreen memory of my Father.
Late Raphael A. Amobi