Mrs. Grace Iheoma Uwalaka-Uko, who left this world on the 16th of April 2020, was the second child born on the 20th of December 1942, to late Mr.Nelson Ibezim & late Mrs. Vida Chivoma Ukeka , of Umuokeanu in Umueledi Village , of Old--Umuahia Autonomous Community , in Umuahia South LGA of Abia State, Nigeria.
She started her educational journey with her Primary School in the very famous St. Silas Primary School. Old Umuahia, from her standard One to standard Six, and came out in flying colours. She later trained as a qualified teacher, through one of the Teacher's Training Colleges in Aba in the then East Central State of Nigeria. She had spent some years in Victoria, Cameroon with her Parents and her elder Sister Aunty DORATHY, who was popularly called "AUNTY" by all. However, she did not spend so much time in Victoria, Cameroon, as she was lucky to meet with a very young handsome hard working Man, who got her hand in marriage, that later brought them to Great Britain. That man was Late Mr. Francis Onyemerenkeya Uwalaka - Uko, who passed onto glory in 2014.
My mum on her arrival in the UK in 1965 was able to get a job and worked as a supervisor with Kenco Coffee House Ealing Broadway London from 1965 - 1967, then went onto work as a Canteen Supervisor for Little woods at Oxford Street from 1967 - 1974 . Then she gave birth to myself and my younger sister Uchechi. She then went on to work with Garden Merchants 'Trust House Forties' at Millwall, London as Catering Manager from 1975 - 1979 and then during this time she had my third sister Chinwe. This period was quite a challenging one for her as she had 3 little kids in addition to the fact that she was working full time. Whilst my father travelled all over the country due to the demand of his work.
But being the hardworking mum she was, she also enrolled herself in a college as a part time student in Hotel and Catering management and Bookkeeping. She also sold Avon products on a full time basis and was awarded a certificate as a great representative of her time. Our mum was also good at DIY . e.g Interior Decorations and painting. Mum was a very courageous, disciplined and hardworking woman. She gave us her very best that any mother can desire to give to her children.
On her return to Nigeria from London in the late 70’s, she stayed a few years not working and took care of us and trying to get to know the system . She eventually got a job as catering Manager with Nigeria Railway Cooperation at Ebuta-Metta Lagos where she worked from 1984-1993. She was later met with many challenges . Nevertheless, she stood firm and religiously dealt with most of the challenges with equanimity. She fought dogmatically to keep the family together in all respects.
It pleased the Almighty God to turn things around for the family, as all roads lead back to London in 1999. Mum then secured a job with Bar Cafe Travelodge At East India Dockland from 1999- 2000 and worked as a Cook Supervisor. She left this role to work with University of London Nutford House Senate Road London as a Catering Manager for 5 years from 2001 - 2005. It was thereafter that her health challenges began and things were not the same any longer for her.
Who are we to challenge God under this circumstance? Our unalloyed faith in God Almighty encourages us to praise him in all situations, He showed our Mother great Mercy, even to grant her salvation in Christ Jesus. We are grateful to God in no small measures. It pleased the Almighty to call her home, to share in His Rest.
Mummy, it is very difficult for us all that you've left behind, to say: ‘’Goodnight and or Morning ". The Eclipse has however overshadowed the day. It is Finished. Rest on now from your Labours. We hope to see you in Heaven, by God's special Grace. Goodnight sweet Mum, Good night mama Grace. Goodnight Dada Iheoma. We shall meet to part no More.
Mrs Oluchi Ajuzie
Mrs Uchechi Udoala
Mrs Chinwe Egenti
Ms Chinatu Uwalaka (Late)
Prince Michael Uwalaka – Stepson
Brother: Rev Evang. Ukeka Charles C
Pastor Mrs Ukeka Iheoma Edith---- Brother's Wife