Eighteen years ago, I met a remarkable young man who was intelligent, knowledgeable, confident, eloquent and charming. His name was Komla Dumor. He became the love of my life and one of the best gifts God gave me. It was the Lord who brought us together and He preserved our union till the end.
I met Komla when we were both students at the University of Ghana, Legon. The first time I interacted with him was at a Sociology group discussion and Komla absolutely blew me away with his knowledge and eloquence. I sat and listened to him in awe. In the end, I felt so intimidated that I decided not to participate in any study group he was involved in.
And yet over time, Komla drew me in and gradually won me over. He wooed me with his baritone, velvety voice; he mesmerized me with his cool gait and air of supreme confidence; he continually made me shake with laughter with his great sense of humour and wit. But above all, Komla won me over with his intellect and his dream to pursue an extraordinary life. With his words he painted for me a vision of the future that sounded so glorious, so exciting and fulfilling that I yielded and eventually vowed to him, ’till death do us part.’ We began dating before he embarked on his brilliant career as a journalist, but even then I knew Komla was special and would attain great heights.
Some of my friends at the time asked, “Kwansema, what do you see in this student boyfriend of yours that you chose him over others who appear to have already made it”? And I would say, “Besides the fact that I’m in love with him, Komla is deep. He has something the others don’t have. I believe Komla has the potential to do great things.” And wow, did he deliver, even beyond my wildest dreams!
Just a few months ago I said to him, “Dear, do you know what is even better than lying in the arms of a man you love who is your husband?” He asked, “What?” I replied, “When that man is Komla Dumor.” Oh, I knew what I had! I knew I had a husband who had chalked such immense success that people the world over admired him. I also knew that I was in a position many women coveted. It was a privilege to be a part of his life. The children and I were so proud of his many accomplishments and we basked in the global recognition he received.
Indeed, Komla was a good and loving husband and companion to me and a wonderful father to our children, Elinam, Elorm and Araba. In his unselfish way, he encouraged and supported me to pursue graduate study at Harvard as he had done. As he was so much in the limelight, I remained less visible in order to preserve some privacy and normalcy for the family. He was such a great presence in our lives and my heart aches for my loss and for my children, who have lost a fantastic and devoted father.
Saturday, January 18th 2014 started like a normal Saturday for us. A day the children and I could shut the world out and have Komla to ourselves. A day when he was simply Daddy and my husband. But now that day marks the beginning of a painful and aching void that we still cannot come to terms with. How can Komla be gone? How can he be forever silent? How can he not come walking through the door of our home in the evenings when the kids and I would trip over ourselves to be the first to hug him? How? And yet that morning when I woke up, my prayer was this: “I will trust in the Lord with all my heart and lean not on my own understanding. In all my ways I acknowledge Him and He will direct my paths. Lord, I commit my husband and my children into Your hands this day.”
So now I lift up my eyes to the hills — where does my help come from? My help comes from the Lord, the Maker of heaven and earth. He will not let my foot slip, He who watches over me will neither slumber nor sleep. The Lord is my shade at my right hand; the sun will not smite me by day, nor the moon by night. The Lord will keep my children and I from harm, the Lord will watch over our lives and our coming and going, both now and forevermore.
Komla, I will miss your voice. I will miss that well of wisdom and knowledge that the children and I continually drew on. I will miss our family trips and the jokes and stories you told as we went, in a manner that only you could. We will miss the special family times on Sundays when you made Daddy’s special stir fry and insisted we all sit down at table and use our best dinner plates. It will never never be the same without you. I will carry with me forever precious and many lovely memories of our journey together, through Harvard at Peabody Terrace, to Ghana and then to the United Kingdom.
Thank you for all you did to make the world a better place for us. We love you and miss you terribly. My only consolation now is that you are with the Lord. Till we meet again, Komla, my love, rest in perfect peace.
Your wife, Kwan