- 47 years old
- Date of birth: Nov 3, 1967
- Place of birth:
Cape Coast, Ghana
- Date of passing: Oct 16, 2015
- Place of passing:
Johannesburg, South Africa
|I will lift up my eyes to the hills ... My strength comes from the Lord. Ps 121|
This memorial website was created in memory of our loved one, Ben Agyare-Kumi, 47, born on November 3, 1967 and passed away on October 16, 2015.
We will remember him forever.
Ben was a simple, elegant, kind, honest and gentle man. He was a man of few words, and of great wisdom. He loved his family and had a few, carefully chosen, close friends. To these people, he was always true and sincere. It felt like the greatest thing to have the love of this man, who was always loyal and protective. Even more amazing was to witness him achieving, at work and home - leading people firmly and fairly; without ever really trying too hard at it.
Ben's passing to glory is untimely and a shock to everyone who knew him. He was so full of life, and lived it to the fullest. He will never be forgotten and will live on in the lives of his children, wife, family and friends. Amen
Eternal rest grant unto Ben o Lord, and let your perpetual light shine upon him.
May he rest in peace. Amen
Fill not your hearts with pain and sorrow,
But remember me in every tomorrow.
Remember the joy, the laughter, the smiles,
I’ve only gone to rest a little while.
Although my leaving causes pain and grief,
my going has eased my hurt,
and given me relief.
So dry your eyes and remember me,
not as I am now, but as I used to be.
Because, I will remember you all,
and look on with a smile.
Understand in your hearts,
I’ve only gone to rest a little while.
As long as I have the love of each of you,
I can live my life in the hearts of all of you.
"Ben, you have left a powerful legacy of love. May God grant you eternal rest, and peace to your family and loved ones.
You always had a quiet, measured, smiling and peaceful presence. You and Uzo made a great couple, and wonderful family.
I wish I got to know you better. Though I met you in England, we both lived in Cape Coast as children at the same time and had friends in common. RIP"
"Dear Uzo, just read about the loss of your husband, Ben Paa Koi Agyare-Kumi. May his soul rest in peace having done his race as a Christian, be rest assured he has eternal life.
I pray for you Uzo, that God would through His Spirit comfort you and bear you in His wings. May He bridge for you, all gaps created by Ben's exit. It is well with you and your children! Remember Jesus loves you!"
"'Cousin Ben', that was the affectionate title we had for you at Legon.
The dear Lord says 'For my thoughts are not your thoughts,
nor are your ways my ways,” Isaiah 55:8. He is the only one who knows why he has decided call you into his bosom at this time although we here are heart broken and shocked.
'Damirifa due, damirifa due' our friend.
Uzo, may God send the comforter to be with you and the children."
"Ben, I only found out you were gone today. I hadn't seen you since we left Legon. I can't believe it. You were such a kind, sweet, lovely person. You were such a gentlemen. I am gutted. Why is it the Good ones always leave us suddenly and in the prime of their lives. Rest in Perfect peace my Brother."
"A man was standing on a beach one day looking out to sea when he saw a ship appear on the horizon. As the ship got closer he noticed it was the most beautiful work of engineering he had ever seen. He couldn’t take his eyes of the ship as it glided over the water. It was the most amazing day in in his life. As the ship began to disappear over the horizon the man felt sadness that he would never see the ship again.
Ben and I met 37 years ago at Adisadel College, Cape Coast where we began our secondary school education. We were in the same house and soon became friends. Some of the senior boys in the house thought we were brothers (probably because of our chubby features) and that brotherhood made us the butt of quite a few jokes, especially if you were nicknamed Fattal and Alafat. On some occasions, we were punished or made to scrub the toppos (toilets, for those who didn’t go to the great school) just because we were brothers.
However, no matter how hard they tried, the brotherhood stayed strong and was made stronger a few weeks into our first term when the whole school went on a strike. Around midnight the school bell started tolling and we were all woken up from our sleep and ordered to run towards the town centre. As I made my way down dark, unfamiliar streets, I kept wondering where I was and what fate awaited me that night. Suddenly I heard my name and a voice saying to me “my house is round the corner. Come with me.” Though I couldn't see the person, I recognised the familiar voice. It was Ben.
His mum welcomed me and a couple of other boys to her home that night and kept us safe from any harm. But the best was yet to come! The next morning Ben's mum baked us the hottest, sweetest bread I had ever tasted! (I still remember that lovely smell wafting into the room). From that day I became part of the family and visited his home several more times. There is a joke that all Fanti's are related. Believe it or not it is true because many years after we left school I found out that we were related to Uncle Tommy.
We had some great times throughout our seven year stay in secondary school and to top it all, we became room mates in sixth form. My very first ever room mate!!! Ben was such a gentleman, always well dressed and calm in everything he did. Most importantly, he never allowed anything to distract him from the reason why he was in school which was to study, pass his exams so he could have a very good future. He enjoyed reading very much and while some of us were happy to use four and five letter words in our daily conversations and school work, Ben was way ahead of us using nine letter words like ‘carbuncle’.
We spent a year at Legon until we met again in London a few years later, this time with our wives and kids. Together with a few other santaclausians we formed Hilltop club and visited each other regularly, sharing so many hours of laughter and listening to jazz and hiplife. Ben eventually moved to Ghana and though I didn’t see him so regularly anymore, I knew he was going about his business as he had always done - quietly, diligently and with perfection. Nothing could go wrong for this fine young man.
So it came as a huge shock to hear Ben was unwell. How could this happen to Ben of all people? Ben knew he had a fight on his hands but was determined to get back on his feet. And he did, even taking selfies for all to see. When I spoke to him a few weeks ago my eyes filled up with tears not because of the sadness of his situation, but because of the joy of hearing his voice again. It took me back to that dark night in Cape Coast when he called by name and kept me safe. I said to him, "my brother, you will be fine and we will once again enjoy some hot bread like we did so many years ago!!
Unfortunately, we have to say good bye to a very dear brother, friend and a true gentleman. As we do so, I pray that the Almighty Father will comfort Ben’s family and all his friends and be our refuge and strength through this difficult period.
Ben Paa Koi 'Alafat' 'Carbuncles' Agyare-Kumi, you have left a huge hole in our lives never to be filled again. As you disappear from our horizon this week we will forever cherish all the memories, joy, happiness and special moments we shared together all those years. We may be saying goodbye to you, but I know that the Almighty Father will be welcoming you to his side and into his loving arms. May your soul rest in peace and may the Almighty Father grant you eternal rest.
Abide with me: fast falls the eventide;
the darkness deepens; Lord, with me abide.
When other helpers fail and comforts flee,
Help of the helpless, O abide with me.
Swift to its close ebbs out life's little day;
earth's joys grow dim, its glories pass away.
Change and decay in all around I see.
O Lord who changes not, abide with me.
I need your presence every passing hour.
What but your grace can foil the tempter's power?
Who like yourself my guide and strength can be?
Through cloud and sunshine, O abide with me.
I fear no foe with you at hand to bless,
though ills have weight, and tears their bitterness.
Where is death's sting? Where, grave, your victory?
I triumph still, if you abide with me.
Hold now your Word before my closing eyes.
Shine through the gloom and point me to the skies.
Heaven's morning breaks and earth's vain shadows flee;
in life, in death, O Lord, abide with me."
"So young! Our hearts are filled with sorrow and grief, as you were taken from us at an inopportune time. We thought you were going to recover, but only God knows why he took you from this earth. You are now with God and surrounded by His angels.
I remember seeing you in Cape Coast when you were five years old, you looked very beautiful and handsome. I wish I had a cell phone at that time to have captured that moment.
All these years we have been separated by continents. We wish we could have had more time together. It was wonderful when you, Uzo, Maame and Kwame came to the United States a few years ago to visit and I am glad we spent that time together. You were funny and such a warm hearted soul. We will miss you dearly as a brother, father and uncle. May your soul rest in peace.
Your sister, Doris Kumi and your niece Yasmeen Imoro"
"Tribute to the Late Mr. Ben Agyare-Kumi
We always say that death is inevitable, and its hour cannot be forecast. But most of the time when we say this, we imagine that hour as placed in an obscure and distant future. Often, we say this, thinking that time is not even a possibility in the community of our utterance.
Sometimes it never occurs to us that death has any connection with the day already begun or that death could arrive this same morning; this morning which appears so naïve and innocent to have anything to do with something ‘as black as death’.
Imagine therefore, the shock that engulfed the entire TIS community when we learned of the passing of one of our own. So many names we have learned to call Ben; a parent; a stakeholder; a mentor, but the one that we at TIS are most proud to have earned the right to use; ‘Friend’.
We remember him as being a kind and loving person who was as beautiful on the inside as he was on the out. Issues about Tema International School were of deep concern to him not only because he was a parent, or because his wife was the Principal, but because he believed in the fact that the world had to be made better for the future generation, and he believed that he owed a quota towards the realization of the TIS dream.
This is why family, friends, TIS and the world haven’t only lost a father, a husband, a relative, and a friend but also, a great man, and a visionary. A huge void has been created in our hearts by his passing, but we find consolation in our belief that he is with our maker.
Ben Agyare-Kumi, rest in eternal peace, and we thank you for the opportunity to be part of your life’s journey
“Praise we the glorious names we know, and they whose names have perished, Lost, in the haze of long ago, in silent love be cherished."
(TIS Hymn, composer - W. G. Tarrant)
Tema International School"
"To Ben, a true gentleman by Nana Ama Amamoo
We needed a new chairperson for the charity I worked for, and one of the trustees recommended that I should get in touch with Uzo. I had had a brief working relationship with her and liked what I saw. So I called to arrange to meet up with her, and in her warm and practical way, invited me to her home. She and Ben lived in East London then. I made my way on the Underground and found both of them at home. Uzo introduced me to Ben who was in the kitchen feeding Maame Efua, gave me a drink, handed me a couple of photo albums and went upstairs to change from her work clothes.
In this day of selfies and other instant photographs on social media, the courtesy of giving a visitor a photo album seems rather quaint. But I leafed eagerly through one album which contained pictures of their wedding. Uzo came down just as I opened the first page of another album. I saw pictures of two young women I knew. ‘ That’s Kate Frimpong and her sister Alberta!’ I exclaimed. ‘Oh you know them? They are Ben’s sisters’, she said nonchalantly.
Know them? Alberta and I sat at the same desk in Primary 4, and Kate was a year ahead of me in secondary school.
Kate and I were members of that ‘hallowed’ group at St Monica’s – school athletes – we even had a separate dining table and diet. We were also in the same house and often in the same dormitory too. Alberta was quiet and reserved and Kate was a live-wire. A natural comedian and the instigator of many pranks against seniors and teachers alike. I counted both of them among people I loved greatly. So finding out that Ben was their brother, made me more determined to get Uzo to be our new chairperson. I did not know about him because he was far younger than us, and in heady teenage years, baby brothers don’t count.
Fortunately for me Uzo agreed to be chair of The African Families Foundation. Thus began a very important relationship for the three of us, with Uzo being the linchpin. I certainly could not tell where she began and Ben ended. She read and learned his lesson notes in order to help him in his Accountancy course! Literally! Often doing the spreadsheets and other tasks to help him complete assignments. And he, in his quiet efficient way, was the one who ensured that her Eurostar uniform was spick and span for work; and the one who understood and correctly translated Maame Efua’s childish gibberish into meaning for her mother; the one who always managed to poke fun at the absurd in a fraught situation. I could always count on him to strip away unnecessary verbiage and cut to the chase on draft fundraising proposals that I sought his opinion about.
I remember him chuckling and gently ribbing Uzo about the craving for McDonald’s ice-cream she developed when she was pregnant with Ozor; and yet went out of his way to keep her constantly supplied. He was magnificent in his unshakeable support when Uzo lost her beloved father. Ben was a gentle man, always smiling and few of words, but whose actions never left you in doubt that Uzo and his children meant the whole world to him. Ben to me was synonymously a devoted husband and father. That is how I will always remember Ben, pointing out the absurd, delivered in his inimitable dry sense of humour, and always smiling in that efficient, ‘you-can-rely-on-me’ way. He was Uzo’s rock. He was a good friend and the world is a poorer place for his departure. Go well, good man and take your rest in the bosom of our Lord. – Nana Ama Amamoo"
"My Dear Uzo,
My heart is broken by you loss. My thoughts and prayers goes out to you Maame and Papa. May God's love strengthen you and your family during this time of sorrow.
It was daring the 1990's when I first met Uzo and immediately bonded in sisterly friendship, whereupon I was introduced to her husband to be: a softly spoken gentle of a gentleman, Ben. He always displayed an air of calmness when I visited, at every visit the home was filled with God's love spiritual warmth and comfort.
Casting my mind back, I recall there such a heightened sense of excitement on the eve of the Wedding - the house was filled with the last minute wedding checks and adornments. It was during the evening when myself, Uzo and the late M. Okeke (May God rest her soul as well) gathered in the kitchen to make some delicate complimentary "Moin moin." food for the wedding festivity late into the night. Ben, with tasks completed, sat in the lounge and lightly watched a video. Ben had the nature of calm serenity, and every so often he would calmly soothed his tired 'wife to be' with anecdotal phrases which made Uzo chuff with laughter and form light banter between them.
Death leaves a heartache that no one can heal, but love Uzo leaves a memory that no one can steal.
Cherish the memories you created with Ben, keep the memory of his spirit alive with the memories you created as a family. I will miss our international chats, bens soft voice and sound advise he shared about our sisterly friendship Uzo. Ben May you rest in peace.
"Blessed are they who mourn for they shall be comforted" Matthew 5:4 esv
Love from your former Maid of Honour"
"TRIBUTE TO BEN AGYARE- KUMI (BAK) 1967 – 2015
from Adisadel College year group 1983
On the 16th of October 2015, after much anticipated hope of your speedy recovery, sadly, we became aware of some rather disheartening news that Ben, our colleague and youngest member of our ‘83 year group, had departed to the other world after a short illness.
Ben joined our ‘83 squad on the mighty Adisadel hill in the academic year of 1978. Despite being the youngest member of our group, such was the poise of the gentleman, that he exhibited the calm matured mannerisms of a composed gentleman.
Ben accomplished his academic work with excellence. After form 5 and was called back to our Alma Mater to pursue his sixth form.
After a successful sixth form, Ben pursued his tertiary education at the University of Ghana, Legon, reading Politics with History, and completing University in 1989.
Ben worked at a series of organisations, namely, Cancer Research UK as a management accountant, Crown Cans PLC, as Finance Manager, Gold Coast Securities Ltd (Compliance & Operations Management ) & finally, as Deputy Managing Director at TG Automobile Ghana Ltd.
Fresh, & shocked, with the untimely pain of sorrow, we began the following day, to pour out grief & tributes of sporadic spontaneity, in memory of our fallen beloved brother.
A number of descriptive words do resonate in our memory of Ben Agyare-Kumi, (BAK). Words, such as: unassuming, hardworking, gentlemanly, warm-spirited, persevering, poised, diplomatic, decent, diligent, sacrificial, steadfast, serene, calm and caring.
Nothing explains our heart-felt pain for the loss of our brother, than the direct quotes of some of our mates below:
Philip Tagoe: Work for a cause, not for applause. ... Live life to express, not to impress... Don't strive to make your presence noticed, just make your absence felt. Nothing in nature lives for itself. Rivers don't drink their own water; Trees don't eat their own fruits; The sun doesn't shine for itself; Flowers don't spread fragrance for themselves. Even Jesus didn't sacrifice for himself. So living for others is a rule of nature. We were all born to help each other. No matter what difficulty you find yourself in, still do good for others. One greatest mistake any man can make is to lean on the understanding of men. Keep trusting the Lord, for he is good! BAK you truly lived for others. RIP
Midas Amoah: BAK was cast and moulded in diplomacy, a perfect example of a gentleman, cool though, but had an eye for success, a good classmate indeed.
George Amissah (Shabba): Death has once again taken a gem from us. Much as we know we're only here for a while, I still can't believe BAK is gone forever from us.
We loved thee well but Jesus loves thee best.
Ronnie Ani-Adjei: The pain of the cold dish of sadness, served us yesterday, has left us in bewilderment & despair; but despite your untimely departure, we rest in the resolve that God knows best. Gentle, diplomatic, decent, Ben; I pray that you are in a place of respite & relief in the creator's bosom. Fare thee well Ben Agyare-Kumi!
Kwasi Boateng: I spent my last two years in Adisco with Agyare-Kumi in 4A and 4B, he was a very warm spirited and hardworking guy. He never gave up on his school work. My wife and kids know him by name, because I always cite him as an example of what hard work and diligence can make of a man. I'll miss him greatly. Agyare-Kumi may not know this ... he really made an impact on me with his perseverance and calm approach to life.
Gone too soon bro!
Douglas Assan: Calmness of mind is one of the beautiful jewels of wisdom. A man becomes calm, in the measure he understands himself, and having learned to govern himself, knows how to adapt himself to others.
A calm man is always loved and revered. He is like a shade-giving tree in a thirsty land - a sheltering rock in a storm. Calmness is power. Benjamin Agyare-Kumi, you exhibited that spirit of calmness and you always remained poised, steadfast and serene. May your calm soul, rest in peace, my brother!
Frank Imbrah: A crab was once running on sea shore and was admiring its beautiful footprints. Suddenly, a huge wave splashed and washed away the footprints. The crab said to the wave, ‘I considered you as one of my best friends, then what made you do this?’ The wave replied, ‘A fisherman was following your footprint, that’s why I cleared it off...’ "Relationships mean caring beyond imagination". Value them & don't ever doubt the intentions. Be Your Brother's Keeper
Never hurt those who value you in life.
Henry Boogie Nelson: Hmmmm!!
And so Death has gently taken Ben's hand, and as lovers have walked the unlit lane to rest in a warm burrow below his native land, far away from life's madness till he is ready to be born again: Fare thee well Ben! May your soul rest in perfect peace till we meet again!
Nii Debrah: When your name is mentioned amongst your peers or brothers as we 83 Santas call ourselves, Benjamin Agyare-Kumi the Gentleman, what a way to have lived your life. Rest in peace my brother you will be missed.
‘Due! due! Damrifa due!’ ‘Abranti3 BAK’ ‘Due n3 amanehunu !’ Rest in Perfect Peace!!
Fondly remembered, by ALL your year group mates, Adisadel 83."
"Ben, my good friend
I cannot find words to describe how disheartened Lillian & I feel about this sad news of losing Ben to God. Only he (The Lord) knows best.
Our prayers and thoughts are with you and the kids. The good Lord will see you through this and strengthen you.
I am filled with tears but I take comfort knowing that my brother is gone to a good place and his pain is over.
Ben was such a gentle giant, we will miss him dearly.
Uzo, God Bless you and the kids!!! You can always count on our support.
Kweku Ricketts-Hagan, MP
Deputy Minister of Trade & Industry
"Dear Uzo, my heartfelt sympathy, praying for God to surround you and your family with his loving arms as you walk this valley of the shadow of death. May you know His comfort, and receive courage for each day. With love, Alison"
"Ohh what a life. Paa Koi, as we affectionately knew him in Aboom, Cape Coast, was the quintessential gentleman … an embodiment of the often used phrase.. cool, calm and collected. Not enough adjectives can describe such a kindly spirit. Both in school and out of school, all who came in contact with Paa Koi came away with something more than they had before. In school, he was a hardworking student with exemplary mannerisms. At home, as we knew him, Paa Koi was an ardent reader who had a ravenous appetite for reading novels and watching movies. In those days in Ghana, while on vacation from Adisco, Indian and Chinese movies were our staple, at the well known Topp Yard cinema hall and Dans Paradise. Being in our late teens with no money, of course, it was easier to ask for pocket money for movies than for nightclubs. As others did the well known Big Apple night club scenes, we would do Topp Yard, see the latest Bollywood movies. What was more interesting was, after watching movies, we would spend hours discussing and critiquing the plot, cast and scenes and making comparisons of the delivery of the lines.
It was a shock when we heard that you took ill. When our mates visited you at your bedside and I was able to speak to you on the phone… you said. “I will be back …..firing on all cylinders” … I guess a rendition of the well-known Arnold Schwarzenegger catch phrase in the 1984 movie “The Terminator”. Since then we talked a couple of times, last was on Monday October 12th, when we talked about everything, from global geo-politics, economics, business ideas and retirement plans, whether it was going to be Costa Rica or Winneba. Unbeknownst to us, our Creator had the ultimate retirement plan. On Thursday, October 15th, I missed a call from you, and called back but could not get you. I then called our other close friend, Bartels Kodwo, who said he was on the phone with you and you were in very high spirits. We then spent 30 minutes reminiscing about the halcyon days of youth… the three of us… our adventures and misadventures in the streets of Cape Coast. On the morning of Friday 16 October, at 7:18 Central Standard Time (USA), I received the text…”George, pls call”. I did and Uzo broke the news that our brother and friend Paa Koi had left us. What a SHOCK!
I have come to terms with the fact that we are all workers in the Lord’s vineyard.. and as our Master and Employer, only the Lord Almighty decides when our work is done and calls us home to rest eternally. It has been a privilege and an honor to have known Paa Koi, certainly, this angel has returned to his rightful place, and his memory will forever be with us. Until we meet again, Paa Koi, Da Yie. You have earned your rest. Da Yie, me nua, da yie."
"Darling Uzo. I am totally devastated for you and your family. I'm saddened that I never met Ben but reading through the tributes it is clear how loved he was and how much he loved you and the kids. I know God will give you the strength to carry on knowing we are all here for you. Ben is looking down on you my dear. May he rest in peace. X"
"My heart broke in sadness Paa Koi, as I got a reminder on Facebook to wish you a Happy Birthday today. Little did we know that the last time we spent at the Thompson triple family Birthday at Cape Coast was the last time we would all be together. You were my calm and collected cousin full of wisdom and always had the best advice for a teenage girl when we were in high school. Your life ended too soon but God needed you to continue to do great things with Him. We will take comfort knowing that your happy memories will remain forever in our hearts. We also pray for comfort and strength for Uzo and the kids. We all miss you!! Auntie Adoma and Mama Sisi . Love always, Janeso ."
"Uncle Paa Koi was how we popularly called you. I went on Facebook to wish Auntie Uzo a Happy birthday only to hear this sad message from Papa Andoh. No body believed me then I read it out loud. When?..... How?..... What happened?..... And it was just a few weeks to your birthday as well.
Uncle Paa Koi, you consoled me and my sister when our farther (your elder brother) passed away and made SURE we received our inheritance.
Uncle, today is your birthday and am lost for words. A true angel has left this earth.
Uncle Paa Koi, may your gentle soul rest in perfect peace.
Uncle Paa Koi Damerifa Due!!!"
"Too soon but he was ready. Say not in grief 'he is no more' but in thankfulness that he was. A happy and content father with so much heart for all. Left too soon!!
There comes birth which brings us joy and happiness but yet we fail to realize that there is also death which is finite along with the grief and sadness of being left behind. Just too soon!!
They call it living or some say that is Life or that’s the way the world evolves. Happiness and Sadness is part of our existence if we are still awake. People say that when we lose a loved one here on earth, we gain an angel in heaven that watches over us. Ben the ANGEL!! I believe this is true and need to take comfort in knowing that we have an angel to watch over us now.
Ben is a gentle Giant and always had positive words to come out of his mouth, a charisma that was next to none. My living Angel gone too soon!! My Rock my best friend, my calmer, my peaceful thought and my sense of reasoning and you can see that in his to lovely kids. He surely left his mark and his ripple effect is everlastings.
Stop…..Stop and Listen I say stop again and listen, you will hear Ben’s Voice saying it is okay, do not force it is well, it was too soon but we will meet again. I seek the Comforter to make sense of this loss that has everyone surprised, angry, hurt and paralyzed with no words. (Silence)
Words of encouragement to all is to have faith, seek for that faith is a powerful gift and if you believe we will all meet again then please take comfort and cling on to that. But be rest assured God’s message is life and truth.
People please seek comfort in one another, embrace your earthly family but seek everlasting spiritual strength which comes from the Lord your God.
Ben the silent. Ben the Calmer, Ben the Inspirational, Ben our Star, Ben the Wise, Ben the Helper, Ben the Giver, please be our Angel in Heaven and thank you for your presence in our life.
I firmly believe that God has accept YOU with open arms for all the good You have done while You were on this earth.
WE WILL FOREVER MISS YOU EVERYDAY BUT YOU ARE IN US"
I write with a heavy heart, tears in my eyes and a huge lump in my throat, still unable to comprehend what has happened and why.
Thank you for welcoming me into your home and your family all of those years ago. You made such a huge impression on me back then with your calm nature, twinkling smile and those kind eyes that expressed such wisdom and sheer contentedness with life.
You were a true gentleman in every sense and one of very few that I have had the luck or pleasure to meet in my life!
Such fond memories of the times that you, Uzo and the kids visited me in Devon... driving along the crazy roads along the North Devon coast at a snails pace, (with Uzo panicking that she would fall of the edge)! Sitting together on my favourite beach at Woolacombe... Introducing you to my new family, eating together, laughing. How I wish we had met again here in Portugal, but life threw a curve ball and it was not meant to be.
You had an amazing gift of making those around you feel good about themselves, - you certainly made me feel confident and proud of the changes I made and my achievements in life. Somehow you managed to express so much with so few words... effortlessly.
It is crazy to think that such a gorgeous man with such a pure soul should leave the earth so early - I cant begin to imagine the incredible wisdom you would have amassed, had you lived to become an elder.
Nonetheless, you have left your positive mark on the many people whose lives you have touched and I know that your children and Uzo will carry the bones of your being, filled with your goodness and light, blessed to have been loved by such a good and special man.
I hope you felt that giant bear hug I sent you mid September fella - it came from the heart.
BIG love always,
"Dear Ben, I am blessed to have had such a wonderful brother in law. You were more of a big brother to me. You were very protective and caring. You showed love and kindness to me and my family when you came into our lives. Everyone loved you so much and still do. You ensured that each of us were doing well. You encouraged and taught me to drive. You also ensured that I was comfortable and I wasn't in need. You were always full of joy and laughter. Your smile was always infectious. You put others first and followed up. You shared your ideas and gave us support.
I am finding it hard to believe you are not with us. When you took Uzo home when you were dating at the time, I would watch you from my window and I would ask myself who is this young man taking my sister out. I am so glad you married her. I wouldn't have asked for someone else. You have two beautiful children whom I love so much. Living with you all have helped me grow in so many ways. You encouraged me to take risks and I am so grateful.
Ben a void has been created and only God can fill it for us. I will miss you very much. I am so lost for words. I will not forget you. Thank you for always being there for Uzo, Maame and Ozor. You were a wonderful husband and father to them. What a blessing you were to the family. Thank you for the legacies you have left behind. Two beautiful children who will continue carry on where you left off.
Rest in peace Ben, I won't say good bye because I know by God Grace I will see you in heaven dear brother in law. Shalom"
"Paa Koi, our hearts are heavy and still in shock at your passing. The youngest of our brothers, you were such a fine gentleman, softly spoken and very respectful.
Little did we know that our conversations with you a few days ago was going to be the last.
The times we spent with you were always happy family moments and those are the memories we shall hold on to.
Pee you've gone too soon but God knows best.
May all your loved ones be comforted with inner peace.
Goodbye baby brother, goodbye."
"Dear Ben...dear daddy Ben...because that's what I fondly called you...I am in total shock. This is so hard...this is so difficult but I God knows best. Thank you for your kindness when I had my baby who is all grown up now. I remember how you and Uzo would come to see me and you would both take the baby just to give me a chance to have a shower and have a little rest. Ben....daddy Ben...I know that you are resting in the bosom of the Lord because you were a good man. You will live on in all our hearts. Rest in perfect peace my brother/friend.
Dear Uzo, may the Lord in his infinite mercies give you the strength to cope with this untimely loss. Stay strong my sister. God bless you and the kids always."
"My darling sister,
Why am I writing a tribute for Ben in October of 2015 when he is so young. I am completely confused and still in a severe state of shock. September 2015 came with a BIG wahala because we talked on September 3, 2015! We all diligently prayed and fasted but God has a different plan.
You have both been my rock through many life challenges, providing unequivocal support and have never been judgmental. I witnessed your wedding and attest to an exemplary marriage that many should emulate. When it was time to take accounting exams during law school, Ben spent hours teaching me and ensured I sailed through, making the most difficult subject easy.
During the early stages of my pregnancy with Lolly and on admission at the hospital, Ben was there. Once discharged, Ben came to the hospital, got me and took me to your home in Plaistow, knowing you were not there to take care of me because you travelled to Nigeria to make arrangements for your father’s funeral. Ben and Julie facilitated my quick recovery.
I will always remember visiting you guys in Wellingborough in 2002 with my little angel Lolly, when she was only 6 months. I remember Lolly had an aggressive virus/cold that kept me awake all night. You and Ben took us to emergency and when we came back to your home, Ben took Lolly and kept her throughout the night, so that I can get some rest. Even after Lolly’s tragic death in 2005, and the years thereafter, you and Ben remained a huge source of strength that helped me go through the many dark moments of my life.
Geographical location was unable to separate us because as you all moved back to Ghana, you and Ben never stopped checking on me. Words is simply inadequate to express the grief I feel but I have to contain myself so that I can provide a capable shoulder for you, Maame and Ozor to lean on.
Be proud Uzo, your husband and the love of your life was a great man. Ben was a man of few words, intelligent, humble, kind, compassionate, and achieved so much in his very short life. He loved you and the children so much my darling sister and so, hold on to those wonderful memories. For the moment and in the near future, the memories will bring tears and make you sad but in the years to come it will bring you comfort and a smile. Always remember how much we all love you and the children. You are not alone."
"Mr Ben is a very kind person and gentleman. I don't know him that much but had some business partnership with his company which was very fruitful. I am actually short of words to express the little I know about this so kind soul. His sudden death is a shock that I still can't do away with. May God strengthen his family and grant peace to his soul."
"In a short space of time that we met at Tema, through the very brief times in the Project Management program and on the few occasions in Hortserve meetings, you made an impression that lives with me till now. I love your assertiveness and composure. A real person. Ben, may your dream live on in the lives you touched. Adieu amigo, adieu my friend till we meet again."
"My dearest sister friend Uzo I continue to pray for your healing a word we talked about so much this summer in South Africa. Gods ways are not our ways and his plans are not ours. Although we don't know why, we know that he is in eternity with Christ which is a beautiful thing. No more pain or suffering. I remember how your eyes lit up when you were talking to Ben on the phone and the excitement around the plans for the future. My heart grieves with you and the children and I pray that God sends his overwhelming comfort and peace to your hearts and minds. I think about the song we sang together "I just can't give up now" . Its moments like these where we truly live the words we sing and trust God even when we don't understand. I love you and pray daily for your strength. Be encouraged my sister, Be encouraged and let not your heart be troubled. Look always to the hills from whence cometh your help your help comes from God."
"I heard so much about Ben through my conversations with Uzo, but we never met. I thank God however for giving me the privilege of speaking with him twice on phone and what love, what wisdom those conversations were laden with! I looked forward to getting to know him better in South Africa, but alas, God has a better plan. Ben reflects so much through Uzo and the children and I am glad to know him through them. Ben will continue to live in our hearts. May the Lord grant you eternal rest and forever have His arms around Uzo, Maame and Ozor."
"A Tribute to my best friend
I find it odd and difficult writing a tribute to you and doing so in the past. I will therefore write in the present as I believe you are only gone for a while from the physical but you are with us in spirit. Indeed though a cord has been severed, you have left a part of your loving spirit in all your loved ones. We grieve your departure and not your loss for every soul that has come to know you has a part of you and bears witness.
You have always been the model of a school mate, an excellent friend, a brother, a caring father, a loving husband, an active Christian, an accountant and a business manager. All who have met you in this 47 years journey bear witness to your clear and visible qualities which are both earthly and divine.
I have been fortunate to witness you on the stage of life in all these roles in the last 26 years and you have excelled. You have been a positive influence on me and others in all these areas. I do not just say it, we discussed these at various times and you know they are true to you. I am eternally grateful.
As a school mate, you have shown brilliance, been focused and have been an achiever. As an excellent friend, you have demonstrated trustworthiness, love, care and kindness, thoughtfulness, no guile, God-fearing, a great counsellor and always exhibited unparallel wisdom. Your integrity and ‘pure at heart’ character, your calmness, assuredness and positive attitude make all difficult situations seem easy to deal with. You held no grudges and have always been sensitive to others needs. To you, with Christ at heart, all things are possible and every problem has a solution.
As a brother, you have always adored your siblings with passionate eagerness and deep love. You have always shared your resources and precious time without holding back.
As a loving model father, you score highly. Your two loving and wonderful children are model children thanks to you and Uzo. They are disciplined and respectful, brilliant academically, God-fearing, caring, focused and ambitious. Simply, they have brilliant futures and are excellent examples and positive influence on all - both young and old. Well done.
As a husband, you have been a wonderful and loving husband to Uzo, your soul mate, life friend and soul love. You have been her darling and your affection and glowing love have never waned. This is love made in heaven, an eternal love. She dearly and deeply misses you, send Godly comfort please. Thanks for making me your best man in this wonderful match.
As a Christian, You have contributed worthily to the body of Christ. You have been a founding member of your church; you have been a regular and active member and have fulfilled the mandate to bring others to Christ and the kingdom of God-the ultimate mission of our lives. Well done and be ushered into the Kingdom of God for you have earned it.
Your dedication and prayers have been exemplary. We prayed at every opportunity. The fruits of the Spirit inhabit you. Patience, calmness, love, kindness and peace that surpass understanding are your hallmarks. These have not been difficult to see, for you demonstrated them every day. Your Godly wisdom compelled all and sundry to seek your counsel. May the face of God shine on your soul and find rest in his bosom.
As an accountant and a business manager, you have been an exemplary professional, exuding the ethics of the profession with hard work, dedication, commitment, transparency, trustworthiness, accountability and probity. Your employer, staff and senior managers have loved and treasured you. You have been committed, dependable and reliable with a great sense of confidentiality. The space you have left cannot be filled. I know because I have worked with you for the last three years.
I am pleased to have witnessed you glaze this earth with such striking qualities. Your work has not been finished hence we grieve your untimely call home.
Even in your hospital bed you exuded your natural qualities. You did not want chaos, you asked us to stop complaining, you prayed and said ‘What a friend we have in Jesus’ you enjoyed Psalm 121 and Numbers 6; 24-26; You always smiled with hope and positive expectation; You were at peace in spite of the pain you bore; You comforted us when you said you ‘‘are ok’ and not ‘will be ok’.
You fought a good fight and strengthened us with positive signs of recovery. Your call to rest in Christ’s bosom took us by surprise. But God is God and how do we question him? We praise him for your life and the pleasure to share it with us.
Till we meet again in Heaven, you will eternally be my best friend. God bless you dear Ben.
Your dear friend Robert"
"I am so sad to hear of Ben's passing. I knew him from his time at CRUK and remember him as a kind and warm hearted man. We used to laugh a lot, and he had a laugh you remember. My condolences to his friends and family. The world is a sorrier place without him."
"Uncle Ben what a "sad news " to receive the news of your death through Facebook. It is even more painful to think of your beautiful and caring family in this sorrowful period. I have always hoped and prayed to see your family that showed me so much love face to face again but now you have gone to rest with the Lord so soon. May nothing hurt you in the land of the living. Your kindness and goodness will speak for you before the throne of God. May the angels of God continue to light up your candle of hope until we meet to part no more. Good night kind-hearted man. We will miss you forever"
"My boyfriend as I always call you even in the presence of my husband.. You were more than a father, big brother and a mentor to me. My eyes cannot stop shearing tears even as I am writing this piece.
I keep asking myself, why you?? whom will I talk to when I am not my self in the office? whom will I share my joy and stressful moments with in the office? whom will I go out to eat lunch with now that you've left me? and I am finding it so difficult to believe you are gone too soon..
Dear God, please accept this beautiful and gentle soul in your bosom and console his family in this painful moments..
A great boss and a great friend I have lost.. I will forever miss you my boyfriend..
Rest in perfect peace in the bosom of our Lord!!"
"Mr. Agyare-Kumi was a good man...a loving man and father. I saw that in him the day I first shook his hand and saw how he looked upon his children, Efua and Papa Kwame, with joy and pride. It was on a Sunday two years ago when he was visiting his wife and children in school. So humble in his demeanour, and so kind, I almost still, to this day, find it hard to believe that he is truly gone. Your memory shall be ingrained within us, because you are a person that ought to be remembered for your goodness and your love. It is my deepest wish that you rest soundly, away from the trials and suffering of life. We, the ones who will remember you, will continue to live in your stead and use your life as an example, to showcase the irreplaceable beauty and greatness in being humble. Be peaceful and sound as you rest. And thank you for your life, for without it, I would have never met Efua, one of my closest friends, and Papa Kwame, my little brother. Rest In Peace Mr. Agyare-Kumi."
"The Day i heard of your death, it took me thinking deep into why we are here on earth. Indeed you have lived a life God am sure will be pleased with. But i pray the Lord Jesus welcomes you to His fathers house and keep you there till we meet again. You are a candle that will burn with us on earth.
God keep you. Ben Damire fa Dua"
"Ben was a much respected colleague of mine from Cancer Research UK. I was deeply saddened to hear the news today. I hope his family can take comfort knowing how much Ben was liked and admired. Rest in peace x"
"Ben was a very kind and gentle man who commanded genuine respect from all his colleagues at Cancer Research UK. I have vivid memories of Ben and feel deeply sadened at his untimely passing. God be with you Ben and your loving family."
"I knew Ben when he worked for Cancer Research UK in England. A lot of people have described Ben as gentle and a gentleman, never were truer words said. So, so sad to hear of his untimely passing and I offer my heartfelt condolences to his family and friends."
"Uncle Ben, I was waiting patiently for your return to the office for a hug from me and to say "I thank God for your life". I can not accept and belief that such a grate man full of passion is gone just like that.
It is my prayer to the almighty God to fill every vacuum created by your pass on and console all your love ones especially your dear wife, Maame and Papa.
“Precious in the sight of Jehovah is the death of his saints” (Psalm 116:15).
“Blessed are the dead who die in the Lord . . . they do rest from their labours” (Revelation 14:13).
You were a blessing to your generation.
Uncle Ben, may your rest with your maker be peaceful."
"Ben, I wish I could say you left us suddenly. But indeed you gave some of us the opportunity to say goodbye (even though we didn’t know it then). We were so hopeful that you would recover. Honestly, you beat the odds with your recovery. You gave all of us hope and my question to God when I heard the news of your passing was, “WHY?” Why give us so much hope only to snatch it away from us? But what I heard in my spirit was, “I am God! I know what to do and when to do it”. And so what can I say but to thank God for the opportunity of meeting and sometimes working with you. I will forever remember your calm and peaceful countenance and demeanor. I will remember your smile and all our interesting discussions on various cuisines. I will not forget your advice to me about disciplining and getting my staff in line by “intentionally” blowing my top and overreacting since that seems to be the language some people understand. Ben, I will miss you and I will try to talk to you as often as I can. You have transitioned into another world- a beautiful blissful world where I hope to meet you one day. We are saddened by your departure but I refuse to say your passing was untimely because I believe you lived a full life. You accomplished what you were sent here to do and God has called His son back to Himself. I pray that God will console Uzo, the kids, the entire family and your loved ones. I know that God will take care of us all till we meet again.
Heaven has indeed gained a great soul and they must be rejoicing."
"Boss Ben Agyare-Kumi was more of a father than a manager. His humility was matchless. He was an affable person and constant in love towards everyone.Never will you see him discouraged no matter the circumstance. He worked happily with anyone he came across- young or old. I have been working for the past fifteen years of my life, but I must say that I have never come across his kind. He was an angel sent to grace my life here on earth. He is a summary of everything I wanted in a manager especially his patience and desire to ensure that every worker found his feet and contributed in no small way to the growth of the company. Boss will inspire, stretch ,challenge and encourage you in all situations. My greatest professional mentor of all time.Wished that this relationship lingered on for a long time to come.Truly,great bosses are hard to find, difficult to leave and impossible to forget. I would eternally be grateful to you for your influence and impact. Painful though is your death, your contributions to the development of colleagues and subordinates alike will always be remembered.Your short life on earth will be celebrated now and always.May the Good Lord find you a place of rest for your selfless soul."
"He was the Boss, but you can't really tell if he was, because he was just so gentle and good hearted ...... I wish I could use the best of the bests words to describe this man............. It takes a special person to make others feel better about themselves, Mr BEN was that special person, I really will miss him. May his soul rest in perfect peace Amen!!
Love from Nigeria
"What a shock!!! What a Shock!! It is still hard to believe that you have really gone, when we phoned to wish you well, just a few days before God called you home, little did Kweku and I know that, that would be the last time we talked to you. Ben, you fought a good fight, with your loving Uzo on your side, may your gentle soul rest in perfect peace. We pray that the Almighty God who gives and takes, comforts and strengthens your dear wife and soul mate and your beautiful children Maame and Papa. Uzo it is well, it is well, God knows best."
"I'm finding it very difficult putting words together to celebrate the life of this Great man who ever lived in this world. Am filled with tears to the brim as I write this tribute.
Oh death why are you so cruel? I'm calling you Sir, Sir, please respond to me.
You were one of the greatest sons Ghana had ever produced and blessed be the womb that gave birth to a fine gentleman like you.
A big brother i never had, a role model i have been deprived of, my mentor i will always crave for. A blessed son of the land who have served his nation, family and friends well till the end.
Our paths crossed in 2012 and i have only known you for three years of my life but it feels like i have known you forever.
The perfect BOSS anybody could ever ask for, always advising, disciplining cautioning and directing us on the right paths.
A friend and a brother for a lifetime. So protective of your Beloved Wife and great kids. You never stopped talking about them to those of us who were very close to you.
Though you can't read what i'm writing i am with conviction without any shred of doubt that you are living comfortably and blissfully with your maker who is pleased with your life on earth.
Your humble nature and modest life you lived during your lifetime is what i will continue to emulate for as long as i live on this earth. You are one of the favorites on the lips of everyone who knew you close and afar. Your life on earth deserves celebration. You left a legacy of discipline honesty and believing God for everything in our lives for the ones who got very close to you.
Someone like you appear once in a lifetime and i am extremely grateful to my Maker for creating me to witness the presence of this great personality.
May God grant you heaven to enjoy as we wait for our turn to meet you once again. If there is one wish to make i will ask God to reverse the hands of time to bring you back to us; but like the saying goes God knows best.
May the Almighty God guide us to walk your steps to be as great as you were during your lifetime, and may He also wipe away our tears and make us stronger as we face each day in our lives without you. I ask for God's Protection guidance and continuous support for Your amazing and beloved wife Uzo and kids.
From your little sister and friend who is constantly in tears as to why this should ever happen to a great person like you and remembering your enviable legacies you left behind. Rest in the bosom of the Lord till we meet again. Rest in Perfect Peace Sir!!"
"If wishes were roses, then, I Obiesili would have wished the Lord Almighty to bring you back to us. But since this is not the case, we accept the will of God which has fallen upon us all. Like the passage in the book of Jeremiah which says “The will or decisions of God Almighty do not bring to us disaster, hatred but love and peace”, yes, to those of us you have left behind we will have love and peace because that is what you would have wished for us. Adieu my worthy and gentle in-law. Requitem in pax pacis."
"We the Wilson family Salute a true man of God who loved his wife Uzo and children Maame and Ozor with a pure love. Our Ben has left a legacy of kindness. We are confident that he is now in the arms of the Lord. Ben you are missed and we will always remember your calm soft voice. Rest in peace our friend and brother. You will never be forgotten."
"Today we the Wilson family salute a great man of God a family man that loved with a pure love for his wife Uzo and children Maame and Ozor. Our Ben who has left a legacy of kindness. Ben you will be missed and especially your gentle warm voice. Thank you so much for being apart our lives and you will be remembered always. We still find it hard to believe that you are not in this world anymore. It's comforting to know that you have gone to be with the Lord. Rest in peace our friend and brother."
"When I first saw you and heard you speak, the gentleness of your voice and character was in every sense captivating. I remember when you came during parents teachers conference to enquire about how Papa was doing in my subject. Your sense of confidence in the little man and your gentle rebuke madr one long for such rebukes because they were replete with love.
As John Donne said, soon death does take our best men with him and I writ that you were one of our very best. But as Donne notes, it is a transitional journey to rest of the body and the souls delivery. May you rest in the blossom of the most high. Till we meet at the purple gate...
For Auntie Uzo, Maame and PK may yhe almighty be your strength."
"Gentle Ben, the first time I met you I was overjoyed that you and Uzo were together.
I knew that you were going to be good for her and with her. I was not wrong.
Over the years I have observed with pleasure albeit from afar the joy, love, confidence and contentment that Uzo exudes and have always loved, cherished and respected you as I do my dear sister Uzo.
I was excited seeing you in March after so many years, couldn't wait to shake your hand and hear that calm, steady and reassuring voice, see your smile that grew from your eyes.
Every memory of you that I hold is a pleasant one. I'm sure you had your faults but I knew of none.
The world does not know what it has lost but we do. Your lovely and loving soul rests in perfect peace with our creator, our creator will strengthen Uzo, Papa, Maame for your loss is irreplaceable, irreparable, unbelievable especially for them but also for us.
What are we but mere mortals, our creator blessed us all with you and has taken back the gift of you.
We are left with beautiful memories of a beautiful person and soul.
It has been a pleasure knowing you and we will miss you sorely.
We give praises to the most high for the honour and privilege of knowing you."
"Uzo, when I was sending you a message on your birthday, little did I know that Ben was gone. Today, I preached at a funeral in my parish here in Canada and was telling them about the tradition in Ghana about the various titles on obituary. Ben's title would be GONE TOO SOON!
Uzo, Papa and Maame, I pray for strength for you I this difficult moments.
Ben why did you leave us at this time? Well, we take consolation in the fact that you're at a better place with the Lord.
Rest in peace!"
"My beautiful cousin! The sweetest of them all.... You took time out to call, supporting, encouraging, advising! We shared a common birthday and I always looked forward to that phone call.... This news is beyond shocking. My heart cries but even now I see your gentle smile saying it's ok... I am ok...
Go with God, rest in his faithful arms... its not goodbye... its only till we meet again! ×××"
"Ben, I did not know you well but what I knew I will not forget - your gentleness, steadiness, integrity, humour and easy going manner. You and Uzo made a great couple, complementing each other wonderfully. I marvelled at the way you were able to love, encourage and support your wife, and family. You have departed way too early but you have achieved so much! May God grant you eternal rest."
"I am still in shock at this rather sad news of your passing Ben. Just when I had been told you were improving. We prayed and prayed and believed God heard us. But "His purpose that shall stand". At such a young age and in the prime of your life, we can't seem to stop asking God why. But He orders the steps of the righteous and His plans for us are good not of evil to bring us to an expected end.
Sleep on in peace Ben knowing that He is able to keep that which is entrusted into His hands. He will keep Uzo and the children in the palm of His hands. He will supply all their needs according to His riches in glory and for His name's sake. He will keep them in perfect peace.
So till the trumpet sounds when you and others who are resting in the Lord shall rise again, to join with the living to be with our Saviour forever, do sleep on in the bosom of the Almighty.
Rest peacefully in the Lord."
"Oh Paa Kwei!
You fought an unexpected battle. Though your loved ones wished for speedy bodily recovery, God decided it was time for your eternal rest. This comforted me when another dear one graduated into heaven and it comforts me again and I share with Uzo, who we will continue to hold dear & treasure as is with my darling niece and nephew you left behind!
1 The righteous man perishes, and no man takes it to heart; And devout men are taken away, while no one understands. For the righteous man is taken away from evil, 2 He enters into peace; They rest in their beds, Each one who walked in his upright way.
We know this to be true because you were a gentle giant and you walked uprightly, your example for us to also emulate and follow.
Rest in the bosom of your Lord & Savior eternally, peacefully until we are favored to meet you again.
Susan Naana Sackey."
"My darling, darling, that is what we called each other when we were fooling around, which was often. Life was what we made it. We loved each other passionately: physically, emotionally and socially. We were enough for each other.
Each day I awake to realize it is true. You are no longer physically with me. I won't get to hear our I love you any more. I won't get to kiss your lips and savour your lips against mine. I won't get to see your smiling twinkle. I won't get to hear you tell me 'Uzo, you can do it.
No longer will I be held in your arms and enjoy your bear hug. I was not ready to let you go. I had so much to say. We had unfinished business. Remember our conversations about our future! We were looking forward to new beginnings. Here I am, lost and confused. Bewildered in my grief and pain. My God, my God!!! There are no words left in me to write. Nothing more to say than I love you to infinity.
I will live for you my darling. Thank you for loving me just as I am. You were my greatest champion, my cheerleader. It's not goodbye. It's see you later. In my dreams, in our children, in the future yet unborn. I am yours. Goodnight my King. Your beloved."
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