My Bestie

My bestie, if only tears could bring you back, then you would have been here with us. Where you are, you would want us to be happy. Though you might be physically gone, your thoughts and memories shall never depart from our minds neither will your place in our hearts be replaced. 

Rest on Dr (Mrs) Damaris Onwuka 
(Nee Abraham-Igwe)
Ada nwere ugwu 1.

Barr. Casmir Igwe


I walked out of the safe shelter of my abode

Into the torrent of rain pouring just outside
Rain strokes hit my body like piercing arrows
Disguising the tears cascading down my cheeks
I raised my eyes to the dark clouds above
Which portrayed the stormy state of my shattered soul
If only I could turn back the hands of time
I’d have held on to your hand as you breathed your last

I’d have joined my feeble strength with yours
As you fought your very last battle
Hugging you so tight
So my scent would accompany you to the unknown land
But I couldn’t
Couldn’t watch as death snatched you from me
Couldn’t watch as you fell, defeated by death
Couldn’t watch you embark on an endless journey without me…

Now, I stand
All alone in the rain
As memories of you flood my heart and mind
Wishing you were here with me
Wishing you didn’t have to say goodbye forever
But beyond the wishes
I carry you in my heart
Knowing that you live on through me
I’ll get all the happiness I can get
Knowing that your happiness is in my happiness
So, when death claims me
In a battle that I cannot win
We’ll again say hello forever
Together again to be separated no more
For that way, we would have defeated death… forever!
Till then,
Remain in my heart.
Dedicated to Mummy Damaris. Forever in our hearts

Answer Shed-Igwe

​Dear Aunty Damaris

I started living with you at age 3, you were kind, compassionate, very principled and a blessing to me and many that knew you. My mum said that my only prayer as a child was for God to make me tall and slim like Aunty Damaris, and God indeed answered those prayers. You taught me how to sing and take care of the house.

I was not surprised when people called you my birth mother.

I thought I will see you this Christmas, but God had another plan. Although you may be gone, you live in my heart forever. I Love you and you will be greatly missed.


Chinaza Ayi Iboh 

“Nee Esom” 

My tribute to Mummy

My dearest and beloved Aunt Damaris; I’m yet to come to terms with your passing. U were an incredible person, loved by so many people for good reasons; you were kind, generous and loving. I’m yet to overcome the temptation to ask God why He allowed you walk through the valley of the shadow of death and yet called you home. I have no doubt you’ve joined the heavenly choir singing Hosanna!! before Him who sits on the Throne, who giveth and taketh; All Glory be to Him.  Mummy, you were a combination of ancient and modern, you were loved by everyone who came across you; I remember the times I watched u sing in occasions, your golden voice and performance had a way of electrifying an audience. I’m convinced that our loss is indeed heaven’s gain. You have fought a good fight and won your race.

Sometimes, you don’t even realize how important someone is to you until they are gone. I was extremely fortunate to have her as my aunt, and to know just how important she was in my life before she died.

Aunt Damaris; Your soul will surely awaken to joyful activities on the last day, for you were an immaculate eagle that flew across our firmament with the plume of peace in your beak, touching and changing lives of many. I pray that the Almighty God comforts Uncle Eugene, Adaeze, Kaycee and Emmanuel, the Abraham-Igwe family and all of us who her life was a blessing to.

Love you, Aunt Damaris. Rest In Peace.
Chinedu Uchechi Esom

Tribute to my Darling Aunt

Who is going to call me Ugom again, if only death knows all the plans, promises and good seeds you planted in us all. If only I can get one last wish, would be to see those delightful smiles of yours again aunt D. If only tears will let me express how much you changed me with your soft angelic voice, I will. Rest In Peace Aunt D, and please always look over this your “Enyi” from heaven until we meet again. Shalom.

Ugochukwu Igwe

A tribute to my Stallion

Nnenne m, it is with a heavy heart that I write this piece. It is surreal that I write this tribute to eulogize you. You seemed larger than life... You loved God and people unapologetically. You taught me to fight gallantly and have zest for life. You knew no limits literally and in every aspect of your life, you went to new boundaries, conquered them and made them plain for us to pass through. You combined your medical career with your musical talents, missionary work, Medical outreaches and other business endeavours.

Your advices often mixed with old Igbo proverbs and wise sayings, your loving discipline when I used to come to your house during our holidays. I bless the lord because you lived out loud... I know you are singing with the angels and glorifying our Heavenly Father, and this is the victory We have in Christ! I dare ask death where is thy sting and thy pain?

It is well with our soul... May the Lord comfort us at this your departure. Again, I say it is well with our Souls. It's Goodnight Nnenne, Not Goodbye... We shall see again bye and bye.

Fare thee well Nnenne m, Adieu Aunty Damaris. Goodnight Mummy.

Lots of love always,

Dr (Mrs.) Chioma Uchendu

“Nee Abraham-Igwe”

​Tribute to my aunt

Aunty m I can't believe am writing this tribute for you. It is indeed painful that you didn't live to see the baby you made pepper soup for.... indeed, which one do I say, and which do I not. Aunty was my second mum, she nursed me like her own daughter, aunty was part of every stage of my life, interestingly she was always eager to listen, encourage, scold, admonish and push me forward at every stage of my life. Most of the beautiful possessions I have today was bought by her. At every point of making sensitive decision aunty was there to advice, l remember her teaching me the rudiments of marriage. Aunty m it is so painful, but I know you are in a better place where there is no sickness or pain, there you will be singing with the angels.... Good night Aunt, we shall meet by God's grace on the resurrection morning.

Barr (Mrs) Ngozi Casmir Igwe

“Nee Apollos Abraham-Igwe”

​Tribute to Nnennem

Nnennem, you loved without reserve. At once aje butter and ochie. I loved the way you would release an Igbo adage when one least expected it. In my mind that was for Dede or Dede Apo to do and not you the youngest. But you would. I remember “enweghi onye na-ata ibe ya ata”.; I remember "dulagam wu u're....". I also remember you teaching me how to tell the time on a clock. If only I could love half as much as you did.

Nnennem, you always lived life with gusto. You put it always out there. Medical school and those crusades where you would sing and play the guitar. Pursuing a medical practice and also releasing musical albums at the same time while raising a family. I wish I could put it all out there; everything that God put into me to bless others, just like you did. Nnennem, who would burst into spontaneous song and who could have an impromptu jam session praising the God she loves so much. I can still hear her with eyes closed, a smile dancing around her lips, head tilted and gyrating calmly, intently, not like drunk people yet obviously incensed - on the good stuff. Perhaps that's the kind of stuff Paul spoke of in Ephesians 5:18-19. When you sang "Agam eburu alleluia eburu". I remember that one night at ayambule place. I know you're probably having a jam worship session where you are. I wish I could praise God with abandon like you did and I can't wait to sing with you again.
Nnenne Damaris, I still can't believe it. If only I could turn back the clock... 
I love you, I miss you, I know I will see you again.

Agametochukwu Iheanyi-Igwe

​A Love Note to Nnenne’m

Every time I prayed for you, I reminded God that when he made you, he gave me a one of a kind and one in a million aunt. One with the biggest heart and with the most caring touch, which you shared with so many of us. For all you did, I am forever thankful and my love for you will grow more with each day that passes. Having you as part of my life was a great gift and having you as my aunt was God's blessing to me.

I miss you Nnenne'm. Even though your absence may keep us apart, my heart is always... always close by you.

I love you Nnenne’m, and nothing will ever change that. Rest in the Bosom of Our Lord.



​To my Beloved Aunt

My Loving Mummy, I have cried every night since u passed with my only consolation being that you are in a better place. I have plenty of gist and stories for you now mummy; the reason it's really painful. Everything you taught me and said to me makes all the sense in the world now. I believe in Angel's now because I can't think of any better place you could possibly be. Thank you Mummy. I Love You Mummy.

You Live in all of us Now and can never be forgotten. 

Tim Igwe Jnr.

​A Poem for A Gem

I wasn't ready to let you go.

But you've already departed,
And my heart is feeling so low.

I miss the sound of your voice,
Your laughter and your sighs.
But most of all I miss your motherly love.
Your love was so strong and real.

There are others here who miss you,
And they've gathered here today.
Your life touched so many people,
Who became your friends along the way.

They want you to know they love you, too.
And they're filled with sadness and grief.
No one really wants to say goodbye,
So we'll just wish you eternal peace.

La n'udo mummy.
Price Shed-Igwe

Nnenne Damaris! Our world lost a true Icon.

Words and tears and prayers will never be enough to celebrate Nnenne. Nnenne loved life. She had a grand vision of what she wanted for herself – God, family, humanity and ministry. Nnenne did not leave any stone unturned. She lived without regret. She never faced any challenge that she thought was insurmountable. She loved whole-heartened, she worshiped with her voice of gold, she gave of herself over and over. She fought a good fight and finished her race.

Nnenne was brave and a woman of great faith – she went where the voice of the spirit led. It didn’t matter if her decision was popular or not. She believed God’s word till the very end. No matter what the situation was, she will always say “Bishop cheer up oga adicha nma”. “relax God de, onwe ihe na eme”. And she will sing olile anya diri ndi kwere ekwe, ndi jiri obi ha kwere na Jesus.

Nnenne was the proverbs 31 woman. She was enterprising and hardworking. She took on challenging assignments and went where men feared to tread. She accomplished all she set out to do. She took her gifting and calling as a doctor as a ministry to the Lord. She felt the pain of her patients. She went wherever duty called – North, West or East. Nnenne never gave an excuse. She always figured out how to make her limited resources last and last, so she helped as many people as she could.

Nnenne was gracious and kind. She enjoyed being a blessing to others. Even on her sick bed Aunty was always looking out for the wellbeing of others – family, friends, even strangers. She had a smile, prayer, kind thought, advice and gift for everybody she met.

Nnenne was all about family. She was the thread that held ours together. She always checked in on everybody. She’ll always say to me: “onwe kwanu onye na ata ibe ya ata” and “bia dulagam wukwanu ure”. Nnenne adored her family and believed hers’ had a divine purpose.

Nnennem I will miss you. All those thoughtful conversations we had about family, faith and life. You were such a beautiful soul; our world has truly lost a rare gem and an icon. Indeed “ihe ukwu mere”.

Good night!

Chikeziri Igwe

My Loving Aunt

KC, sunshine!' My earliest memories of those words are of you. I'm pained that I will never hear you say those words again. I have never known pain so great that it feels like a tightening in my chest, drying out my tears. I liked to think I was your favourite, but I know you had the incredible capacity to make almost everyone feel loved, valued and special. And that did not change with your circumstance. 

From you I learned that nobody has the right to set rules or limits over my life. You lived... period! You ran a great race, you fought a good fight, and completely on your terms. 

'Olilanya diri ndi kwere ekwe'

These familiar words from your music comfort us. There is hope for the believer!  Rest in power, great daughter of Abraham. Rest in peace, Dr. Damaris Onwuka.

I love you infinitely!!!

KC 'Sunshine' Esom

I Miss You So Much

I lost my aunt recently ...... she was amazing......lived amazing...loved amazing. 

She modeled life for many of us. 
Regardless of how uncertain or unpopular a path was, if it was in line with her passion, what gave her joy, her dream.... she followed it. 

She was a doctor, and a musician, and she excelled in both. She had a thriving private practice yet went back to school for public health because she had dreams of using her skills (learned and earned) to do good....... and that, she did.
She shared her life so easily, shared her joy, her wealth and cared for children and women in developing communities and did it in a way that she inspired others to do same. 

She loved family, so much. She was my aunt, but she was my sister ... her big outlook to life, her loud laughter, her zest, her ‘can do anything’ approach to everything was a model for me.

I will keep living each day with passion, constantly learning ... finding new things to enrich my life and community ... that’s my goal. Because you see, my aunt… that's what she taught me.

I love you so much Aunty Damaris.


Adaeze Iheanyi-Igwe


Hollow feeling...head still spinning…

Still trying to get my head around the fact we will not see you again this side of eternity. Now I understand the lament, how are the mighty fallen! Taken away just when we thought we might just begin to appreciate the gift you have been to us all. Beautiful and gentle...but mighty in influence. The voice of an angel...cutting through the misery of our lives and helping us think better. How I will miss, the banter we had when you always chose to introduce me as younger brother rather than nephew, me often reminding you I was first...and you last! How true though, that I had no elder sister but you.... the inspiration from such an early age. From an early introduction to the power of music, to the dedication and whole-hearted commitment required in fixing the broken bodies of is very true that I have generally followed wherever you have trod.  You be-strode the generations with ease, the beautiful bridge I had to understanding the often-baffling world of the generations previous. In fact, I have often wondered if there has ever been anyone...I certainly have not seen... with such an influence and change the mind of such a man as my dad.

Such a paradox, combining a no nonsense "you will not mess with me" attitude with wonderful humanity.... such a truly caring heart, it was untrue! In language only you could muster, both demanding higher ideals and yet melting our hearts in equal measure. "You be the best man you can, and the rest will fall in place" was your advice when I came bleating about the hard knocks of life and my growing distrust for humanity. Now I know how true... that the harder work is with us than it is with others. None had the power you cut through the tension and diffuse the anger, during those moments of family tension when it would seem the family could tear itself apart. Appealing easily to both young and old. Shifting effortlessly between humour and tears.... and an appeal to reason... with the dexterity of a gifted ballerina and such mastery, you wove an intricate pattern of beauty we could not but see...none could blow away the cobwebs that stopped us seeing, how close we were to going over the edge.

Every day I lift my musical instrument of choice...the guitar, I think of you. From the very first day I watched the Campus Evangels the many and long days sitting and watching in that studio in Enugu, tired but spellbound... watching you do your thing as you brought your brand of gospel to many lives. The guitar, the instrument that appeared suddenly in all my dreams as you were in those days. This was it.... the therapy I needed to calm my own often troubled mind... and the power and discipline to reach countless lives. You probably never appreciated that without you...there would have been no guitar...none of the many exhilarating experiences that have graced my life. Thank you is not enough to express how I feel, four decades on from my first awareness of your sounds of music. You gave me reason to believe… to keep fighting… and you fanned whatever gift I had in that inimitable style of yours. Yours was the power to elevate...Thank you Aunty. Your last lesson was perhaps the most profound of all... that there is more power in a broken soul; that you do not need to have it all to give it all; that in suffering, the best work is often done if one remains true to those values that matter. You kept putting others first....and like Samson of old who slew more in his death than in life, your best work appears to be yet lives inspired to do more and never give in to circumstance.

To keep you longer with us was all I thought of over the past few months, but alas the power appears to have failed me at a time you really needed me...I am so sorry. God only knows how hard we tried, but it looks like the Angels in heaven preferred you joined their singing hordes. Adieu. In the ageless and heartfelt words of L Binyon, I can only will not grow old as we that are left grow old; at the going down of the sun and in the morning, we will remember you. Your star still shines...your influence still lives...your song still rings loud and clear.

Adieu big sister.

Lt. Col. Chukwuma Abraham-Igwe



Dr (Mrs.) Damaris Ogechi Onwuka (Nee Abraham Igwe) ADANWEREUGWU 1

Damaris Ogechi, the sixth and last child of Elder Abraham and Deaconess Abigail Igwe of Umugolo Umunakanu Owerri, Ehime Mbano LGA Imo State was born on June 5, 1956. She studied Medicine and Surgery and obtained MBBS from the University of Nigeria Nsukka. She did her House Job and NYSC at Eku Baptist Hospital and Military Hospital Benin respectively. Young Dr Damaris worked as Medical Officer at Queen Elizabeth Hospital and Abia State Teaching Hospital Aba, Abia State. She got married to Dr Eugene Onwuka, another medical Doctor from Umuogele Umuakwu Isiala Ngwa North and they have three children – a daughter who is also a medical doctor and two sons. Dr Damaris had a Master’s Degree in Public Health from the University of Calabar and University of Lagos and Post Graduate Diploma in Organizational Management of the University of Ibadan.

In 2001, Damaris moved to the Federal Ministry of Health and was posted to the National Programme on Immunization, Abuja. In 2007, she was reposted to National Primary Healthcare Development Agency as Director and Zonal Coordinator. Her service to Nigeria is predicated on reduction of maternal and child mortality rate throughout the length and breadth of Nigeria. It is in recognition of this that a Traditional Ruler conferred on Dr (Mrs.) D.O. Onwuka, the chieftaincy title “ADANWEREUGWU 1” on December 27, 2010.

Dr (Mrs.) Onwuka was a great singer with ALBUMS in circulation countrywide. She was a practicing Christian reaching people with the love of God. She travelled to United Kingdom, Israel, Egypt, Thailand, Canada, South Africa, Korea, Dubai, Mauritius, United States of America, and France.

Her death was received by the Igwe Family, the village and the Ehime Mbano L.G.A with great grief. Her service as a Medical Doctor till her death was sincere, selfless and total. Dr (Mrs.) D.O. Onwuka died a Christian and she is not dead, she is translated. Her soul and spirit live on and on till the resurrection morning. She will come up clothed with immortality and we shall see her again face to face in the congregation of the Church Triumphant.

The Abraham Igwe Family commensurate with her husband and children and all.

Apostle T.I. Igwe PhD

For the Abraham Igwe Family



(Nee Abraham-Igwe) 

Ada Nwere Ugwu I


Damaris Ogechi Onwuka (Nee Abraham-Igwe), Adanwereugwu I of Umunakanu, Owerre was born to the family of Late Elder Abraham Igwe and Late Deaconess Abigail Igwe on 5th June 1956 into the Umuebezala kindred of Umugolo Umunakanu, Ehime Mbano L.G.A. of Imo state. She was the last of her siblings and had lost her father when she was very young and tender. She, thus became the first daughter of Apostle Dr. T. I. Igwe her eldest brother who ensured she was nurtured and brought up in the fear of our Lord.

She attended Umugolo Community School and The Apostolic Church School, Amumara in Ezinihitte LGA of Imo state for her primary education. She attended Federal Government College, Sokoto and Federal Government College, Enugu for her secondary education from where she was admitted into the University of Nigeria (UNN) to study medicine obtaining an MBBS degree in 1982. She did her house job in Eku Baptist Hospital (now in Delta state) and served in the National Youth Service scheme in St. Camillus Hospital, Uromi and the Military Hospital in Benin City, in the then Bendel state (now Edo state).

Dr. Damaris worked in the Ibeku Central Hospital, Umuahia from where she got employed into Imo State Ministry of Health and worked as a medical officer in the then Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Umuahia. After her marriage she was transferred to Aba General Hospital where she worked as a senior medical officer until the hospital was converted to Abia State University Teaching hospital.

In addition, she obtained a Master of Public Health (MPH) degree from the College of Medicine, University of Lagos in 1998. Dr. Damaris also got into the National Postgraduate Medical College residency programme while in Abia State University Teaching Hospital Aba, passed her part 1 final in Public Health and became an Associate Fellow of the National Post graduate Medical College of Nigeria in 2000.

Further studies took her out of the shores of the country to Thailand where she earned a post graduate diploma in Health Care financing from the Chulalongkorn University Bangkok, Thailand in 2010 in a World Bank assisted project. Furthermore, she did a postgraduate diploma in Management in UNN (Enugu Campus) and also a postgraduate diploma in Health Systems Management from Galilee International Management Institute, Nahalal, Israel in 2011.

Dr. Damaris worked as a Senior Registrar in Abia State University Teaching Hospital from 1998 to 2000. Her passion in caring for children and women propelled her career and earning her employment in the Federal Civil Service as Deputy Director, Technical in then National Programme on Immunization (NPI) Abuja in 2001. She was deployed to Enugu as South East Zonal Coordinator in 2003 and remained so until the merger with National Primary Care Development Agency (NPHCDA) in 2007 when she was appointed CMO/Zonal Coordinator SEZ. She continued there until 2013 when she was transferred back to Headquarters in Abuja as CMO/Head Disease Control/Surveillance in the Department of Disease Control & Immunization. She worked and retired as Director Disease Control & Immunization in 2016.


Dr. Damaris was not just work and career. She got married to Dr. Eugene Onwuka on 5th October 1985 and they were blessed with three children: Adaeze, Kelechi and Emmanuel. The family lived in Aba and Enugu where the children grew up. She was not just a wife and mother but a mentor and support to other family members outside her nuclear family. She took interest in the career and wellbeing of her husband’s kit and kin. Her impact within family is just indescribable and brought value into the Onwuka family. Of particular note was the rapport she built with the women in her husband’s family home in Umuogele Umuakwu from the onset of her marriage.

On getting home from the city she would visit every household, laughed and joked with each one and would demand for ‘ukazi soup with achara and mgbam’ from our uncles’ wives. She had a great blend with her mother in-law and both would team up to decide issues which the men had no choice but to abide with. She took great care of her parents’ in-law and would sit most times and chat with her father in-law who would tell her a lot of family stories.

Dr. Damaris was an active member in the ECWA churches in Aba – ECWA 1, ECWA, Abayi and ECWA English Church where she worshipped with her family. When she moved over to Enugu, the ECWA Church 1 in Enugu equally felt her presence in its full ramifications. In all these churches she was an active member in the ECWA women fellowship.


From her younger days in Umugolo Damaris started singing in the choir and rendering special numbers in the church. This she carried on into secondary schools in FGC, Sokoto and Enugu where she was active in the FCS and CU respectively. She sang inspiring songs that touched hearts, endeared her to her listeners, ministered the gospel and gave praise to our God. In the university, she not only sang special numbers with friends and colleagues in the Campus Evangels but was an active member of the drama wing. These groups would go out on crusades to the rural area and other towns.

During her life in both secondary schools and the university, she left indelible impact in the lives of colleagues and friends that she came across. The stories are endless and we remain grateful to God. By the time of her marriage to Eugene she released her debut album ‘Feed My Flock’ on her wedding day. She has since launched other viz.: ‘The Lion of Judah’, ‘Echoes of Love’ andRiwo Otito’. Dr. Damaris also ministered extensively in the Full Gospel Business Men’s Fellowship International meetings in Owerri, Umuahia, Aba, Enugu and Abuja as well as at regional and national conventions. Specifically, the Umuahia chapter started their early meetings in her sitting room in the Queen Elizabeth Hospital while she was a medical officer.


Dr. Damaris was a strong, bold and courageous character, a virtuous woman that represented all that was expressed in the famous biblical passage of Proverbs chapter 31. And behind that character was a kind hearted and tender woman who loved not just her own children but children generally. She feared none but spoke out the truth to all and sundry. Her home was open for relations, friends and strangers. She hated injustice and oppression in the workplace and at home. She believed in hard work and would not tolerate laziness or indolence. She was down to earth and despite her status or level had a motherly touch with a difference at home. Her close attachment to her mother-in-law from whom she learned a lot about her husband’s family endeared her to the entire family.

Her dedication to work and passion for children started manifesting in Eku Baptist Hospital where she did her house job and did not go unnoticed in the Okpara Ward (children’s ward) in Queen Elizabeth Hospital where she would go out of her way to make sure that the children lived. While in NPI and the NPHCDA, she crisscrossed the length and breadth of this country ensuring that children were fully immunized according to schedule and worked with the team that saw to NPHCDA providing the enabling environment for vaccine production in the country. Despite facing armed bandits across the borders in the Taraba/Adamawa axis, irate mobs in the Jos Plateau region and car snatching syndicates in the middle-belt region, she was unrelenting in the dedication and pursuit of duty to ensure children were protected from childhood killer diseases.

And from the toils of duty, Dr. Damaris was instrumental in getting her people to build a Primary Healthcare Centre in Umugolo and ensured nurses were deployed to work in the centre. As part of her contribution in giving back to society, she initiated and facilitated the provision of free medical services to Umuakwu and Umugolo communities in Abia and Imo states respectively; and giving out food stuff and clothing to the needy in both communities. In 2014, she registered the Damaris Care Network (DCN) which has been used to continue these services until illness took its toll on her health. It was in recognition of her contribution to her community that she was conferred with the title of Adanwereugwu I of Umunakanu Owerre by H.R.H. Eze Udo I, B.A. Onuoha and the Umugolo community.

Taking a break from these activities once yearly, Dr. Damaris would call out Christians, asking them to stop and take stock, count their blessing and give thanks to God in the annual ‘Glorious Evening of Praise’ which she organized in Aba and Enugu. She has been described as “an amazing amazon, a pearl of distinct value, a vessel and seed of encouragement, a silent motivator, enterprising doctor, sister of great zeal and courage in her practical love for others”. We will definitely miss this lady of songs.

But who are we to question the almighty God who had chosen to call her home at this time? Nkem, we love you, but God loves you most.

Rest in Peace, in the Bosom of our Lord till we meet to part no more.

Dr. Eugene Onwuka