26 May 2022
Dear Parents and Guardians,
At times I write to make meaning of my experience of this world; this is one of those occasions.
The past few days have been very difficult, in particular for many boys who were close to Oyisa, but also for all of us as we have lost a member of our family.
The passing of one of our own is a tragedy for which no one is ever prepared; teenagers are even more ill-prepared for such an event.
Often in the busyness of the everyday routines of life, we take so much for granted. We live in an era where our tomorrow often seems guaranteed, and our resource can usually buffer us from the unexpected. When something happens that is beyond our control, it shakes our very understanding of the natural order of things.
Even in our incessant pursuit of achievement we should be especially careful not to look beyond the simple daily joy of living and of connecting with each other, such that our lives are well-lived; rich in social experience, filled with love and appreciation for life and for each other.
Our young men will have many more questions than answers at this time – they are not alone. When a life is taken from us, our ephemeral lifespan is brought into sharp focus. We do not comprehend. Why one and not another? This will remain a question for all of us for as long as we shall live here on this earth, and as we see but only a part of the great mystery of life.
But, and most importantly and however difficult this is to grasp: hope will and must prevail. Hope is promise; the promise of more and of tomorrow. Now, the darkness of our grief casts a long shadow over our thoughts of hope; but in time, the son will shine upon the darkness and the shadow will lift.
Oyisa – to overcome – will be a beacon of hope even as we grieve his passing. His warmth, energy and youthful enthusiasm for life will remain our enduring memory of him. We will celebrate his zeal and energy and every boy will have his own memories of his person.
Xanti and Noluthando, may our prayers carry you through your pain. May they afford your spirit a lightness of being, and a warmth of attachment to this place and its people as Oyisa’s home away from home.
May each friend whom Oyisa had be a balm for your wound. As the weeks, months and years pass, may the memory of his life be one of joy, laughter and peace. Although too short, our abiding memory is one of a life well-lived and of a rich and rewarding experience; may your memory be this too.
Your son was our son; a brother to many. May his memory be an inspiration to those who follow in his footsteps.
Hamba kahle Oyisa!