•Reveal The Kind Of Dad He Is At 70
Tribute to my Dad, my Prince! The prospect of using words to express my love, appreciation and gratitude to God for having you as a father and experiencing the sheer affection you have always bestowed on your family is almost inconceivable however just as you have constantly thought us faith in our abilities with intestinal fortitude no task is impossible.
Considering the unprecedented era we are now in, I am especially grateful to God Almighty for sparing our lives this far to witness this special day. It goes without saying your life is a testimony, from being an orphan at the tender age of 9 to missing out on the love, care, comfort, discipline and mentorship from your parents. Despite the odds, you grew up into a fine gentleman, an amazing father although a disciplinarian. You played your role as a Father dutifully and effortlessly, an experience you were unfortunate to enjoy.
Your time in the military saw you travel the lengths and breaths of Nigeria as part of your service which, I guess helped in making you the detribalised Nigerian and bridge builder that you are today. You have always had a genuine interest in people and their cultures, with many bosom friends (home and abroad) and from all tribes and beliefs. Daddy, this is a testament to you being a people’s person, a good heart, genuine spirit and warmth towards everyone at all levels of society, thinking about it I can only aspire to emulate these amiable qualities.
Your experiences in the Military, Politics and your love for Sports especially Golf – your “second wife” further enhanced your innate attributes of being empathic, selfless, dogged, gracious, courageous, respectful and full of wisdom. I definitely got my love for sports for you likewise your grandchildren, Ayomide & Tomisin. Your learning agility and desire to continuously stretch yourself intellectually is commendable and a tribute to your tenacity and love for education and culture.
You are a great man, a loving father and supportive husband. I say it all the time to anyone who cares to listen that I never heard my parents quarrel nor have I heard you raise your voice at my Mum. I couldn’t be more thankful for the loving and peaceful home you provided my siblings and I. Having been married for almost 15 years I fully understand the peculiarities of marriage and appreciate even more now your efforts in maintaining a cordial union. Daddy, to know you is to know laughter, banter, humour, proverbs, confidence, humility and contentment. Fun memories with you abound but one I can never forget was when you visited me at my office in Canary Wharf. All dressed in your white Agbada, you certainly stood out in the crowd but more so was the news you had for me. You had chosen my wedding date and elated you were that the date fell on a Saturday and coincided with your wedding anniversary. On seeing you, I gasped! Here in the heart of London’s financial district is my Dad in his traditional Yoruba attire amidst the conventional corporately dressed setting. Even worse, was I had to do the needful by according you the customary Yoruba greeting as bystanders stood to watch. It is either you were oblivious to the public attention that day or you relished the “Coming to America” scene at play, I bet the latter was the case but it was certainly an amusing experience I will never forget.
You have raised 4 independent and successful daughters now mothers, giving us the best education to enable us achieve our career dreams and more and I appreciate you greatly for the generosity and sacrifices.
Olagunsoye – “wealth ascends the throne” what an exceptional and befitting name for it literally encapsulates your life. Undeniably, you have successfully ascended a position in society that no one imagined you ever could attain, from your humble beginnings of being the 43rd child out of 64 children of Late Oba Moses Oyewole
Oyinlola to being a reputable elder statesman today. You have attained all in perfect health and mind, a testament to God’s favour in your life. You can be rest assured your father and late mother Olori Comfort Ololade Oyinlola are both so proud of all you have achieved most importantly, for preserving their legacy. Proverbs 22:1 says, “A good name is more desirable than great riches”, and I am ever so thankful for giving me a good name.
Daddy, I celebrate you today and I will seize this opportunity to sincerely thank you for all the support. I am wishing you the very best that life has to offer as you mark 70 years on earth. May God Almighty continue to prosper you with perfect health, peace of mind and a joyous spirit all the days of your life, Amen.
Happy 70th Birthday Popsy!!
Love you and God bless
Olufunmilayo Oyinlola Olomolehin (Daughter)
Prince with Olufunmilayo at her wedding
My Dad at 70th
Baami as I fondly call you, you are indeed an inspiration not just to us as a father but to almost everyone who has had the privilege of interacting with you one way or the other. Most people learn from their parents at a young age but I must say I have learnt a lot from you in my adult years just by emulating your lifestyle. One very important thing I have learnt from you is to be of good cheer, never let anything bother you no matter how much it might have cost you financially and most importantly to forgive, let go and let God.
I will never forget when you lost your election campaign for a senatorial seat, the result had not even been officially announced when you came to my room in Okuku to ask me about the law school registration process. In my head, I was thinking you just lost millions and you were quick to dust yourself and move on to greater things.
Baami, I have gone from losing $100 at the airport to losing a whole lot more in some business deals that went bad and I wasn’t fazed, didn’t think about it, just dusted myself, forgave the defrauder and moved on in Olagunsoye’s style. Knowing my Ijebu self, Baami you know that’s some serious milestones there and I owe it all to you.
Time and space fail me to say everything I could about why I admire and love you. But I will give a shortlist of some of the reasons why I do:
Your humility and respect; this is second to none, your grace and respect for all, both young and old are certainly worth emulating. Your work and family; two difficult things to balance, oftentimes one suffers for the other. Even though it seemed at the early days that your family was taking the back burner in your life, it was your commitment and dedication to your work that enabled you give us the best education we could get and a good life. We never lacked the necessity of life. For this, Baami I say thank you.
Your support and generosity; this is almost to a fault. Even in your lack, you never fail to support and still help others. You are always there to support our dreams no matter how silly they were, even if it is to sell AC pepper… I will never let you down on this or my grace garden which is now glory … lol. From my career choice to business choice even to marriage choice you’ve supported me all the way.
Last but not the least your faith in God, when I look back from where knew my father’s Christianity to be and what it is now, I can only praise God. You are an epitome of Proverbs 16v7 “When a man’s ways please the LORD, he maketh even his enemies to be at peace with him”. Many call you the prince of peace, for you are of the Lord and the peace of the Most High be upon you now and forever.
Thanks for being a great dad and a wonderful grandpa. It’s a privilege and an honor to call you my father.
Happy Birthday, Dad.
I love you.
Daddy @ 70
My life has been blessed beyond measure because of you daddy. Reflecting over the years and your influence in my life, there are a few specific characteristics that stand out; traits that are directly responsible for my drive in life and my happiness as a wife and mother.
A great work ethic: One of the things I am most thankful for is that you’ve shown us how to work hard and strive for our goals. I mean I can’t recall the number of times my siblings and I have heard the story of how you were an orphan at 9 and how that circumstance didn’t deter you from working towards your dreams. I have loved hearing about how you left home to join the military and all the stories that came with it, most especially the bee attack on your platoon. But what strikes me the most, without you even realizing when you tell us these stories, was your constant dedication to your mission, colleagues and to the nation. Your tenacity has always
motivated me to strive for the best at all times, no matter the circumstance I find myself: as a wife, as a mother, and in my career.
Lifelong learner: This same tenacity saw you strive for excellence and self-development. You have been a lifelong learner. Two degrees, two masters and five doctorates is no mean fit. Every time I saw myself struggle in school and I think … oh my! myoid man went to school at 50 years of age, I tell myself, Oyinda you better do this. Nevertheless, daddy, I still await prove of all tho claimed first position in school. I’m still very much on this journey and you have proved it possible to continue to develop one self. Passionate and Kind: Your strive for excellence goes beyond acquiring knowledge. I see you do things excellently because you’re driven by passion – not for yourself nor name – but for the inherent value things themselves, for the benefit of others, and mostly to the glory of the God who makes all things excellent. I see how much passion you put in your service to humanity hence you’ve always given a sense of hope, reliability and calmness. I remember my younger sister and I told you that you are always out meeting with everyone in Osun State and we wanted you to stay back home with us but you calmly said you would be back by a certain time but for now you needed to attend to “your extended family, the people of Osun”.
You embrace everyone you come in contact with. Your kindness and humility go a LONG way in life. You have so much of both. I relish in the fact that I was the only one you were around for my birth. I feel this is why I am not only your look alike but got a tad bit of this part of your nature. This is truly where we are two peas in a pod. You have taught me to open my heart. Give everyone not just a second chance but up to 70 chances if possible. You have taught me never to think less of anyone but to serve/treat everyone wholeheartedly like I would Jesus. And this I pray to pass unto your grandkids.
Zeal for the Gospel: Growing up we always saw mummy as the Iyadura and I didn’t think I was ever going to refer to you having a zeal for God but my oh my! How the tides have turned. Haha. Now you call for morning prayers when we all gather in the house. You trust all your actions to God at all times. I would call and tell you how I think this isn’t going right or how I wanted it to go one way but it’s going in another and you would say, “Gods will be done”. And what a way to live! To be rest assured that God’s will be done and it will be the best outcome because His thoughts to us are those of good and not of evil.
Dad, you are truly amazing. I can’t say it enough. I could go on and on and on as there’s so much I’ve learned from you but I will stop here. Thank you for all that you’ve done. You are one of my biggest sources of inspiration and I’m so thankful to have you in my life. I appreciate all you do for us and a whole lot for me especially wink. You are an amazing dad and an even better grandpa. I love you and so very proud to call you Dad. So do Tope and Re mama. I hope you have an amazing birthday. Cheers to another 10 years when we would cheer again tothe next 10 years by God’s grace.
Your look-alike and almost birthday Twin
Oyindamola Eyitayo (Daughter)
TO A SPECIAL DAD AT 70
Happy Birthday to my very own Lagzy (as I love to call you, probably not to your face, but now you know …) It is still surreal that this is the big 70. I still remember my younger Dad so vividly, the man in the sharp and pressed army green uniform with patent black shoes and a green beret to the left. Though we sawyou not too often during these times, the times you were around were very much felt, ORDER! That was the feeling, we had to be in order when daddy was around – no playing in the kitchen, no playing with the male staff outside (typical girl dad concerns), no staying up late, lest we recast the 7 pm news that you missed to you. I mean for God’s sake, all understood at that time was Sesame street and at best, tales by moonlight – and then someone asks about NTA news, what, how, where? So yes, good luck to me if I happened to be up past my bedtime and was playing, rather than watching the news, in the days of no internet; that was straight up blasting for the night. Good thing you were not a beater, but his blasting had just as much effect in my opinion.
Then you dropped the uniform and picked up agbada, adire agbada most times with his ‘Oyin ni o’ cap to the right – Prince Lagzy coming through! You quickly became my favourite during these times, why so you may ask. You were around more, so I had more typical “Mummy can I have … “ mummy replies go and ask your daddy … “Daddy please I need to buy some things for school. .. “ you try to enquire a bit more just because, then you say “Okay, here you go…”, and give me times five of what I actually needed, first occasion, second occasion …. and you still ask why/how you became my favourite, ha-ha.
Jokes aside, that is who you are, generous to a fault! You would give your last breath if you could and pray that God replaces your own. I wish I could give a story to reflect each of your characteristics, but that would mean me publishing a book. You are humble, kind, selfless, loyal, dependable, content, jovial, believe the best in people, disciplined, smart, witty, talented, humorous, emotional (that green uniform was deceiving], forgiving, peaceful and God-fearing.
The life lessons you have taught me, directly and indirectly, are unquantifiable and I cherish them so much as I continue to imbibe them and pass them on to your grandchildren, whom you adore so much.
Sometimes I feel like I missed out on having you around for the formative years of my life, but that thought is quickly erased by the deep sense of gratitude I have that though you were far from home, God brought you back alive. Though I was taken away from home, God brought me back alive. You celebrated all my major milestones, graduation from Secondary School (your entrance to that ceremony is a story for another dav), graduation from University (again, another wild moment when my name was called – courtesy the over 50 friends and associates that came with you … still not sure how they all got into the hall), walked me down the aisle and handed me over to another spectacular gentleman, attended my children’s naming ceremony (p.s. I am the only one of the four of us that got this privilege).
So yes, you have been there for me and are still very much here for us myself, Juwon, Tami and Kitan. No doubt, everything about your time with us has and is working according to Gods orchestrated plan, and to Him alone be all the glory as we celebrate this 70th birthday milestone with you today as a Prince, a Husband, a Father, an Officer, Jokes aside, that is who you are, generous to a fault! You would give a perfect Gentleman, a Sportsman, an elder statesman-and most especially, a child of the Most High God.
I hope I have made you proud as a daughter, even if it is only a fraction of how I am proud to call you my Daddy. I promise to work harder on my Yoruba proficiency; the problem is just that your standard in this subject area is quite high and not easily available in my generation, lol. Left to you, this my Yoruba that my friends would rate as good Yoruba is barely a language you recognize, but it shall get better.
In case I have not said it enough to you, I love you very much dad and I am indeed very blessed to have you as my earthly father.
Cheers to my very own Lagzy, Happy 70th Birthday and I pray that we are all here to celebrate more decades with you in good health and sound mind in Jesus name, Amen. Lots of love,
Olayinka Okunowo (Daughter)