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Tribute to my worthy daughter, Nneoma Rebecca Tiriko (nee egbe)

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Nne Daddy, Ada Ugo, Ada Ogada, Ada Eze, Ada du Uwa nma, it was not that I did not expect you to die, but not at the time you passed on. I lack words to pay tribute to you, which in human thoughts ought to be the other way around.

As a child, you accepted, championed, and encouraged your brothers in your natural school at home to speak fluent un-anglocised Item dialect of the Igbo language to the admiration of all persons that had the opportunity to interact with you. You were proud of where your parents came from despite the fact that you were born, bred, and “buttered” in Lagos.

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You never hesitated to go to Item at the least opportunity and to swim in the “yori yori” section of the Avu River with other children irrespective of social class or parentage. Your last stay in Item was during the December period 2019 to January 2020 probably as your bye-bye visit to Item people.

You served God and man. You belonged to the youth choir of the Holy Family Catholic Church, Festac Town, and the Catholic Youth Organisation. Financially, you supported and contributed in full the cost of the erection of one of the pillars in the proposed St John’s Catholic Church Item parish during the January 1, 2020 launching at Amaokwe Item.

You believed that complete possession is proven only by giving. All your life you were ready to give your time (which was part of your life), your resources, and your talent for the betterment of persons whose parts crossed yours even to your detriment, inconvenience and pain.

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For me, you were my special assistant (on pro bono basis), part of my pain absorber and solution provider. I trust most others shared the same experience.

These uncommon and special memories of you will remain evergreen and always bring back smiles. I recall with strong nostalgic feeling an incident during one of my numerous visits to you at the American Cancer Hospital Ikeduru, Imo State; when I was about to leave you (after I had told you I was leaving), you asked me where I was going and “ordered” me to sit down on your sick bed. I did sit down and only left after you released me. If it were possible and if wishes were horses, can I ask you to come back for a little while for us to have a final conversation, fun, and entertainment (the type you organised for my birthday in 2019).

You always meant so much to me. The fact that you are no longer physically present with me will always leave a vacuum in my heart until we meet again. However, my eyes are open as I see all the sweet and beautiful things you left behind.

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The soundness of your judgment in the choice of Alex, like your spouse, manifested exceedingly during the period of your ill-health. He showed unparalleled commitment and care to your well-being during and until you passed on to your maker. Even in your sickbed, you shared a similar commitment to his wellbeing. I recall some of your final requests from me not minding the excruciating pain you were going through. I believe your love for each other was made in heaven.

I am full of the love and fun we shared as members of the Original family of five now reduced to a family of four with your departure as our ambassador in heaven. You will never be forgotten. I believe Almighty God has you in His bosom and we have you in our hearts.

Ga nke oma Ada Ugo, Ada Ogada, Nwanne Dozie, Enyi Chinenye, my “sugar baby” and irreplaceable biological daughter.

Rest on in the bosom of Almighty God until we meet and part no more.

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