Angela O’joe-St Rose delivered the following eulogy for her mother, Ann O’joe (November 22, 1934–April 21, 2022).
Ann Pascall, Ann O’joe, Annalina, Mummy, Ms Ann, Mammy Ann—those were some of the names I would call her, and she would answer, “What yuh want? That would cost you.”
Mummy died peacefully, on the morning of Thursday, April 21 with two of her daughters and grandson at her bedside. She had said she didn’t want to die alone, and she got her wish.
Mum was an early member of La Brea CYO (Catholic Youth Organisation) under then parish priest, Fr John Mendes. She was the Secretary to the Oilfield Workers Trade Union Women’s Arm at La Brea, Secretary to the Housewives Association of Trinidad and Tobago and she worked for many years as the cook/cleaner for quite a few parish priests from 1972 to 1980 and even after that just helped whenever it was needed to make sure our priests were comfortable. She was a member of the Sanctuary Ministry –and a no-nonsense one at that– for many years until she decided she was too old. But again, she helped if asked.
Mummy went to every church harvest in Trinidad with my sister Kathleen as her chauffeur. Going to a new church and purchasing rare plants, which besides her children, grandchildren and great-grands were her pride and joy. Every morning she would be outside, tending and talking to them. Visiting plant shows were part of her yearly routine, at least three times for the year until Covid-19 halted everything.
Another hobby of hers was attending the community classes offered by the Ministry of Community Development, which she did until she was 85 years old.
That was our mother, a busy body, disciplinarian, fun-loving woman, who took care of us, and we were able to do the same for her over the last two months when she fell ill and stayed with her to the end.
One of her granddaughters, Makeda wrote this tribute.
“My granny, my granny, my granny, would I ever stop calling your name? That seems quite impossible since you were the only constant in my life. I was the grandchild who literally fell into your lap, delivered by a stork and you were a gift to me from God.
You epitomised what it meant to be a mother and grandmother. You took care of me and so many others so selflessly, I believe that was your main purpose here on earth.
Granny, where would I have been without you? During the most challenging times in my life, you were always there to dry my tears, provide an abundance of hugs, encouraging words and strength to pick myself back up and move on more empowered than before.
You were the cornerstone of our family and will surely be missed by all. Known to some as ‘Ms Hot Mouth’, a real live wire, that was my granny.
On the gentler side was your love for your children, grand and great-grands, admirable to say the least, but that love for Meyah was something different.
Your ‘Mee Mee’ talks about you all the time, as she remembers the walks you shared, the advice you gave, and your pushing her to achieve her goals.
She asked me recently if you can still see her and if you would be looking out for her in Heaven, to which I answered a resounding ‘yes’. Granny, we would always love you, need you and miss you, but I refuse to be selfish as you were ready to go. Lord, I am confident that she is in the best hands. Please take care of her, as only You can.
Until we meet again. Sleep peacefully my love.
Forever, your grandchild, Keda.”