Before the Funeral there was a Lying-in at the undertakers. Then there was a Wake at Riri's family home, and finally the Funeral shortly after. Many many visitors came to pay their respects and to talk to the family. They also signed the Condolence book, and wrote their messages about Riri and the events they had shared together.
Riri's uncle Martin playing the trumpet at the graveside in New Southgate cemetery, here in north London.
Riri's mom Monique wrote a few lines about him, which she has allowed me to add here.
Riri means someone extraordinary special,
a bright spark.
Riri liked fun and art, but
Riri decided he had enough.
He saw no way out of this mess.
He looked for jobs here.
He looked for jobs there.
But no one discovered his worth.
Riri felt let down by society.
His brothers went to University.
He saw his chances of a good life disappear.
So one fine day, on the 27th of May,
He leaped to his end in this world.
Riri, Rest in Peace,
Riri's burial, lots of floral tributes and with Dan, Riri's dad, and a couple of Riri's close friends.
The service attracted far too many people to fit into the chapel. We all went on to attend a reception at the West Indian Cultural centre in Harringey, after the funeral and internment. There's more to say about Riri Wa Thea, but that's all I want to put here.
I am much older than Riri was (age 24) and it will take me a long time to understand why a young healthy man or woman would want to take their own life deliberately. Everyone who knew him loved him. And loves him still.
Monday, 2 June 2008
ALL HANDS AT WORK
ON A BOAT,
A friend's son (in his twenties) killed himself last week.
It seems to have not yet sunk in fully, that Riri's gone. We've dropped around a couple of times, and we end up chatting. sometimes it's about the family and the boy who's gone, sometimes it's about all the usual gossip.
We've had a few hugs, and everyone is talking. We're all terrifically polite, everyone listens to everyone else. The funeral will be next week. I can see how easily a person can slip from being angry and not communicating clearly, to self-harm, and then going further.
I found a web-site
which seems to be addressing young people. Are they more at risk than us older persons ?? Maybe so . . .
another [ statistical ] link is
W H A T __ D O__Y O U__T H I N K __?__?__?
The van has gone. Someone drove it away while I was away for a few days. No-one saw anything. No-one heard anything. All my neighbours are amazed that anyone would want a small red van which was so old. But, it's gone.
I've got a crime report number, the insurance company isn't interested (the claim would be for less than the excess on my third-party policy) and the police will only recover my van if I agree to pay £ 105 plus storage. [ see http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/uk/crime/article1654994.ece ]
We were actually saving up for a replacement, but we're both back on the bicycles again . . . good for the old waistline . . .