A Tribute to My Late Daddy…You Will Never Be Forgotten

Such strong emotions when I think of you daddy. It has been almost 29 years since we lost you but your memory and legacy still live on warmly in our hearts. I was only 5 years old when you were taken away but I still have snapshots of our time together embedded in my memory.

Despite your busy schedule as a surgeon, I remember you coming home from work, me rushing to the front door, you picking me up and twirling me around in your arms with a big smile on your face, presenting me with a big bar of Cadbury’s chocolate. I remember me sitting on your belly like you were a motor-bike, your hands as handle-bars and your nose as the horn, revving up your voice as you pretended to accelerate. I remember us dancing in the living room to music on the record-player back when turn-tables were popular.

I remember you on your knees, leaning over to wash me in the bathtub saying in a gentle voice “close your eyes” so that soap wouldn’t get in my eyes. I remember family trips to the game parks, upcountry and the coast, you stoically breaking up fights between me and my big brothers. I think of you often and I missed you even more the day I walked down the aisle and when the kids were born.

I remember your gentleness, humility and compassion. Mummy, I don’t know how you managed losing your husband at the age of 39 and raising 4 kids but you are my hero and I applaud you for the great sacrifices you made to give us an unforgettable childhood despite the loss of the head of our family. To my amazing big brothers, uncles, cousins, friends and in-laws who have since become father figures to me, your contribution to my life has lessened the blow of such an early loss and has allowed me to appreciate even more the beauty of fatherhood that I see in my loving husband towards our children.

Happy Father’s Day, daddy. We love you, and you will never be forgotten.

My dad and I at our Kitisuru house in Nairobi, Kenya (1981).

My dad and I at our Kitisuru house in Nairobi, Kenya (1981).