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Funeral oration titled: ''HERE WE LAY OUR WREATH FOR A THOROUGH-BRED TEACHER AND WORTHY HIGH MASTER'' and delivered at the commendation service of former School Principal, Pa S.O. Agbebi at the School Chapel on behalf of the Alumni
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   A FUNERAL ORATION IN HONOUR OF PA SAMUEL OMOTAYO AGBEBI PRINCIPAL OF THE SCHOOL (1978-1984) Presented by Jadesola Taiwo Babatola  National Treasurer ChristÕs School Alumni Association Worldwide   ÔÔHERE WE LAY OUR WREATH FOR A THOROUGH-BRED TEACHER AND WORTHY HIGH MASTERÕÕ  On behalf of the President, Rt. Hon. Chevalier   Dr. Justus Itsueli , KSG, OON , ChristÕs School Alumni Association Worldwide (CSAAWW) , I respectfully and humbly greet the widow, children and members of the Agbebi Family, friends, Elders, Living past and present Principals and the entire School Family present at this commendation service to honour a thorough-bred educator and worthy High Master - Pa Samuel Omotayo Agbebi  (1927-2016), our reputable former Principal of the School between 1978 and 1984. It is great to be part of ChristÕs School, Ado-Ekiti, one of the oldest secondary schools in Nigeria... The oldest NigeriaÕs high school was CMS Grammar School, Lagos founded in 1859 and the closest school of similar status and congruence in our province was the Ondo Boys High School founded in 1919. Our School was the 25th secondary school founded in  Nigeria in 1933 and the 1st model missionary school in Ekitiland. Our auspicious position in this part of the world eventually gave us a world-class fame as a school birth on integrity, self-discipline and hard-work. This School from its outset was built on the sweat, toil and labour of reputable, great men and women, many gone by. Our products stood tall due to the industry, vocational efforts and selfless public service of our founder,  builder and teachers. They imbibed in us those ethical values of personal discipline and devotion to Christ life. The past 83 years of toil is to make us the best and to beat the rest. What a glorious era! Today, we are celebrating the home-call of Pa S.O.Agbebi, but also thanking God for the good legacies of our heroes past!     Samuel Omotayo Agbebi , fondly called S.O. Agbebi was born on March 7th, 1927 at Osi-Ekiti. He was a hardworking scholar from his youthful days and a relentless teacher whose lifetime made him a role model. He was truly a gentleman, amiable, firm and principled. From late 1930s when he entered St. PaulÕs Anglican Primary School and later became a pupil Teacher, he was marked with distinction and much difference. His attendance of the famous St AndrewÕs College, Oyo, made him a thoughtful and well-bred child mender and disciplinarian in schools. When he entered University of Ibadan where he obtained a BachelorÕs Honors Degree in English Literature, the die had been cast for him to attain the top. He was the 1st graduate of Osi-Ekiti and he blaze the trail for others to follow. He stood in same stead with likes of E.A. Babalola, 1st Oye-Ekiti graduate. In the teaching profession, our dear S.O. worked at St. PaulÕs Anglican School, Zaria and later at Oyemekun Grammar School, Akure. His carriage and successes led him to position of the Principal at Okeigbo/Ifetedo Grammar School. He also served at Anglican Grammar School, Igbara-Oke, Ekiti Baptist High School, Igede-Ekiti and eventually came to last posting at ChristÕs School, Ado-Ekiti in 1978, where he retired in 1984. We are here to pay our last respect to a dear father, an illustrious teacher and leader as he joins Òthe innumerable caravan, that moves to that mysterious realm where each shall take his chamber in the silent halls.ÕÕ When the trumpet sounded with cling of sounds at the angelic gate, one of us Ð Okan Seye Adetunmbi received the call from Babajide Agbebi that ÔS.O.Õ had  passed over the baton. William Wordsworth at the final resting place said of Sir John Milton, the great thus: "Milton thou shouldn't be leaving at this hour. England hath need of thee; ÉOh rise us up, return to us again; and give us manners, virtue, freedom, power. Thy soul was like a starÉ and yet in thy heart, the lowliest duties on herself did lay."  Nnamdi Azikiwe mourned Herbert Macaulay at his graveside quoting another word of legacies thus: "Lives of great men all remind us; we can make our lives sublime and departing leave behind us, footprints on the sand or time." What have we written about you? What did we gain from you? Hear the sayings of an old boy: Ô  S.O. Agbebi was a good man. A complete  gentleman, full of humility and great passion for the development and   progress of his students. He understood the ingredients of quality education. He loved his students and full of passion, a teacher with unique  personality. You will be greatly missed. Õ Another one wrote that he was a legend: ÔÉa very kind and loving man. He disciplined us like his own biological children. He was honest and forthright man in the management of school resources. He remains our role model... May the Lord grant our  father a peaceful rest.Õ   What more legacies do we share about this godly man whose testimonies are robust and unassailable? If we knew better, we should have celebrated him and care for our elders in their lifetime! But alas, such good moment was never missed, when the 79/84 Set visited him on 20th December, 2015 at his Ado-Ekiti residence. He was overwhelmed with joy and shed tears of joy. He knew he was not forgotten.  It was a memorable day that I did not witness. Yet we thank God for a life well spent. He was survived by a lifelong partner Ð Madam Margaret Ebun Agbebi and good Children, largely old students, Babajide, Abiola, Oluwayemisi, Temitope, Kola, Solape and Kunbi. Living past and current Principals, staff and students, Elders, Trustees and old students from far and near, it is time to brace up and leave behind good legacies for posterity to adjudge. S. O. Agbebi has finished his course in the earthly race. The greatest legacy he left for us is living hope in Christ.  One day, we shall be called to account for the past, when he returns to judge the earth. S.O. Agbebi, Adieu. Fare thee well, till we meet again at the feet of our Lord and saviour.    And then we shall proclaim, Christ is our cornerstone, on Him alone we build. This is our banner, our victory over death, over this sinful worldÉ   Up School!    Agidimo Hills, Ado-Ekiti -   7th April, 2016   
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