15 Feb Sights and sounds, as the OCI Foundation bids a final farewell to Mrs Chiugo EZEIKE, the Foundation’s late Fashion Consultant on February 12th, 2021.
Mrs Chiugo EZEIKE was the OCI Foundation’s Fashion Consultant, who passed away suddenly on December 16th, 2020.
On Friday, January the 29th, 2021, a Vigil (wake-keeping) was held at her family home in Lagos, Nigeria. Two weeks later, on Friday, February the 12th, 2021, she was late to rest at her home town in Igbo Ukwu, Anambra State, Nigeria.
Chiugo’s passing was a big blow to the OCI Foundation, and was an extremely painful period all. Team members in Lagos and Anambra States were on ground at both occasions, and pictures and videos from both events, are shown below, and these are followed by the Foundation’s tribute (video and text).
PICS 1 OF 2: Wake-keeping (FESTAC Town, Lagos, Nigeria; 29/01/2021)
PICS 2 OF 2: Funeral (Igbo Ukwu, Anambra State, Nigeria; 12/02/2021)
Video 1 of 2: The Funeral (Igbo Ukwu, Anambra State, Nigeria; 12/02/2021)
Video 2 of 2: The Tribute
TEXT OF THE TRIBUTE
Dear Chiugo . . . .
This Tribute was extremely hard to write. We wished we never had to do it. We still wish that we will all wake up one day to realize that this has all been a badly crafted joke. A prank. A nightmare . . . .
But, it has now been over a month, and none of us have heard from you. Those laughs, and that warmth that you exude so effortlessly, have not been felt by any of us in the past few weeks. Weeks that have felt like eternity, as we continue to harbour the faint hope, albeit an unrealistic one, that what we heard, was untrue.
No one should blame us for this forlorn hope, though. You were too dear for us to simply let go of; too much of a darling for us to just accept this cruel blow; and so resourceful and efficient, that we just cannot begin to get used to the realities that you will no longer be one of us.
It hurts deeply, and we doubt that this gnawing pain will ever go away. Your sudden departure broke our hearts, and we doubt they will ever heal. In the few months you worked with us, you endeared yourself to every single person within the OCI FOUNDATION. We only worked with you for a few months, but it felt like years. You endeared yourself to all of us, and all who knew you, loved you. In the short time that we were privileged to call you our FASHION CONSULTANT, you contributed too many, with too little. And you did them, always, with a smile and a laugh. You made us glow, and your impact will remain with us for as long the OCI Foundation exists.
You designed our anti-COVID19 masks, and helped with our outfits. You promised to help with our mufflers, and with the design and production of our materials as we move forward. You were our FASHIONISTA, and we could not have asked for anything better. You represented us in meetings. You promoted our messages. You stood tall and proud in our outfit. You believed in our dreams. And you worked to make those dreams happen. It is hard to imagine the OCI Foundation without you, Dear Chiugo. But, for your sake, we are even more determined to succeed. And we will.
Perhaps, we all missed it. Yes, you were simply too nice to be left with us humans for too long. You were just too angelic, dear Chiugo, that we can understand why the angels would want you back in their fold so quickly. Come to think of it, we never saw you angry. We never heard you complain. We never heard you shout at anyone. We never saw you without a smile or a laugh. And we never saw you worry about anything. You smile and laugh where mere mortals like us would be angry, or even pick up fights. You forgave easily. You were nice to everyone. These traits are all out of this world. Perhaps, you have gone to be where only angels like you exist.
It feels so unreal, Chiugo, to think that you are no longer here with us. We would never had let you go, were we to have the powers to do so. But, like yourself, we are all powerless mortals in the face of the almighty God.
As you rest in peace, be assured that we will do our best for your loved ones to live in peace. You spoke passionately about your daughters and their studies. You wanted an OCI Foundation’s scholarship, for at least one of them. Today, we promise to have the scholarships, not for one, but for both of them. And these scholarships will be renewed annually for them, until their graduation from the University.
We will be in touch with your family. And we will not let your dreams for them, go away. Our hearts are broken. Our tears may never ever dry up. But we will push on, and your lovely memory, will only spur us on. Thank you, for sharing these memories with us. We will never forget.
Good bye, our beautiful, kind-hearted and reliable Fashionista.
Good night. And rest on, till we meet, to part no more.
May God bless your gentle soul. AMEN.
From, the Onyebuchi Chris Ifediora (OCI) Foundation.
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