I Didn't Die, I Yet Live. Cheer up!

AUTOBIOGRAPHY AS WRITTEN BY LATE DAME MERCY CHINATU IGWE AND TO BE PUBLISHED ON THE EVENT OF HER DEATH.

This autobiography was edited by her last child, Seth Igwe, with ALL the original context intact.

I, Dame Mercy Chinatu Igwe was born into the family of Late Mr/Mrs Raphael Ozuzuma of Umagwuru in Mbieri, Mbaitoli L.G.A., Imo State on the 20th of January, 1945.

I began my early education at CMS Primary School in Umuokanne, Ohaji Egbema, Imo State where my parents sojourned and gave birth to me and my siblings. I later returned to my hometown, Umagwuru in Mbieri, Imo State to live with my grandmother, where I stayed back to complete my primary education. I proceeded to furthering my education at Girls’ Secondary school, Egbu and got my G4 certificate.

Lagos was the next port of call for me. In Lagos, I lived with my uncle, Mr. G.N. Onuekwusi. While in Lagos, I got employed as a machine operator with C.P.I (Chasbery Pond International), makers of famous petroleum jelly and other range of homecare products. While in the employ of C.P.I., my ambition and hunger for skill acquisition spurred me to learn typing and shorthand. Afterwards, I resigned from C.P.I., to work as a stenographer which was a very lucrative job role at the time.

I worked as a stenographer until the start of the civil war when I had to leave with my uncle, Late Mr. Onuekwusi to Portharcourt, Rivers State. In Portharcourt, an ambitious young me with a quest for success got a job as an Office Assistant with a private firm. I quit my role as an Office Assistant when the Biafran War began to work as a supervisor to the Caritas/Red Cross society. This singular decision was like a winning move by a chess Grandmaster as it ensured my family back home never lacked supplies all through the famine associated with the Biafran War.

At the peak of the Biafran war, sometime between 1968 and 1969, I had to return to join my parents and siblings at Umuokanne where they were still sojourning at the time. While back in Umuokanne, I met and fell in love with the very charming, handsome, and ebullient Late Mr. Julius Ogaranyaegbulam Nwaisoma (JON) Igwe. We were shortly married. I left with my husband to Lagos where he was based.

Back in Lagos, and because of my record of discipline and work ethics, I sought and got an employment for the second time with C.P.I. which later was rebranded to Lever Brothers PLC. I was employed this time, not as a machine operator, but as the Production Manager. As a Production Manager with Lever Brothers, I did the best in my capacity to see that as many Umuokanne persons as it were possible, were employed. I was in the employ of Lever Brothers until 1985 when the company started going through series of mergers and acquisitions which ultimately led to its rebranding to Unilever Nigeria Limited in 1996.

Life continued for me after Lever brothers as I ventured into a couple of businesses. Businesses like soap making and sales, palm oil production and sales in large drums, wholesale and distribution of Liquor amongst others.

I remained in Lagos with my family until 2002 when my husband and I retired – but weren’t tired –and returned to the village. We afterwards, set up the ‘People’s Bread’ bakery, Umuokanne.

My Late husband and I are very lucky to have been blessed with 7 children – 4 girls, 3 boys – all of which are doing marvelously well in their various spheres of life.

Let my story motivate you and drive you to attain the success that God has preordained for you.

Should you be reading this, I have not died, but yet live with the hope that we would see again when the saints are called up to reign with our king, Jesus.