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In Memory of a Father

July 8, 2012

Since you left us, a third generation has matured -- your grandchildren, some of whom you have not seen, but I know that your spirit knows them. They are fine people and would make you proud.  Even though you have not physically seen them and hugged them, you have left them a legacy and stories to pass on.

Inshan left this world peacefully after living a humble and low profiled-life. I remember several funny stories related by Dad to us, but there were two significant events in his life that he neglected to share with us.  I wondered why!Only after I undertook the responsibility to initiate a memorial site for my dad, I learned of these two events from my eldest sister, who only remembers the significance of the events but not all the details.  She was only 9 or 10 years old when these incidents unfolded.

Sometime in 1964, one of the well-known Ricks & Sari wealthy sons was cruising down Abary River with his family in a luxury speedboat.  Unfortunately, the boat capsized,  My father who happened to be crossing the river, saw the incident, and quickly rushed to rescue the passengers in the boat.  He somehow managed to bring them to safety.  A few weeks later, the lucky survivors hunted my father down and offered him a visa either to the USA or Canada, but he did not accept the offer.  I don’t know his reason for not accepting the offer, since he never shared this story with us.  As they said, a person develops his or her characteristics from his/her parents and then by his/her environment.  Here my dad demonstrated a core value of Islam by extending a helping hand to strangers in need of assistance without much expectation in return; qualities that he undoubtedly inherited from his parents through Islamic upbringings.  Islam teaches us that it is a blessing to give than to receive.

On another incident, he bravely hunted and killed a ferocious tiger, after many failed attempts by the then British leadership in Guyana.  Here my dad demonstrated another core value, humbleness.  He never related this incident to us either but he told us all the funny stories that made us laugh our heads off.

On the other side of my father’s personality, is an argumentative character.  Those who know him will tell you that he will be the last one standing on the floor with the last words.  He loved a great argument to the extent that he misled people to believe that I was studying to become a lawyer during my college years.  A father’s dream, I guess. (I never studied law but at times, I can be very argumentative.  (You know the source of this gene)

During my Dad’s final months, he spent his time going to the Mosque, a name that was so foreign to him in his younger days.  I know better than to question why certain things are ordained the way they are.  This is what Almighty Allah wanted for my Dad, and God led the way for him.  From my dad’s life or legacy, if you will, I have learned to rely more on Allah and to put my faith and trust in Him and to call upon Him for protection and guidance.  I also have the courage to try new things. I have also learned that to fail only means another door to a better opportunity has opened, and that all people are the same in God's eyes and that love is the greatest of all things.

Gone but not forgotten. Rest in peace.  My prayers are with You, Mom and Sally. Love always, Eyden.

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