Albert Saggar Kalloo
‘My father impressed upon all his children, the vitality of spiritual food’
The following is the eulogy of Albert Saggar Kalloo delivered by his daughter Dr Sherene Kalloo at his farewell at the Belgrove’s Funeral Home in Tacarigua on June 22, 2022:
MANY a time we take life and its tranquillity for granted. Four days ago I began a new chapter in my life.
I now know what it is like to be an orphan.
When my mom passed two years ago, my energies shifted and were more concentrated on dad.
His once brilliant mind was in decline with dementia, sometimes he had periods of clarity and other times utter confusion. It was painful to see him in that state.
He, who walked around our Valsayn block three times, he who did yoga and headstands, his once fit trim body was now a feeble frame who could not leave his bed.
Thankfully close family members together with his caregivers Joan, Anne and Shafallie were most present to give him love, care and attention in the last couple of years.
My dad, my hero left this place to reunite with my mother, his darl (he called her shortened for darling)
He spent 98 years on this earth. My siblings, my children and those whose lives he touched and moulded are grateful to God for giving us this disciplinarian, a man of impeccable character, a faithful husband and without a doubt a true soldier of religion.
Dad gave me the blessing of life. He was my exemplar, the most potent moral force in my life. I, am the woman that I am today because of the morals and values instilled in me by my parents. I was taught to be simple, kind, humble and loving. I was told to treat everyone equally and help others in need.
My father impressed upon all his children, the vitality of spiritual food. He always said health is not only from the food we eat but from love and faith in God. Morality and values are what gives each of us the sense that we are worthy human beings.
‘When I went to Jamaica in 1983 we had no email, Skype or WhatsApp, we had something better… actual handwritten letters from my father’
I remember on dad’s 95th birthday, my son Varen asked him, “Grampy, what is the meaning of life?” He excitedly answered, “life is about making others happy, love everybody and be kind. There’s too much hatred in this world. There are people who will hate you, but never mind, you love them. This earth will be a better place to live in with more love. It is important to serve humanity.” This to me, was profound coming from my father.
My father gave love and positive energy. He spent his life educating others.
I have many fond memories: but playing the piano and singing with him was one I hold the closest. I have some painful memories as well: like getting a good spanking from him, I chose not to remember why though.
I will never forget the day I got my letter from Mona, Jamaica, accepting me into medical school, we both started screaming and jumping around excitedly.
‘Even after I got married, I could not cut my navel string as I moved in behind his house ensuring I would get my mother’s soup every Saturday and the watchful, protective eye of my father’
Becoming a doctor was not just my dream but my father’s dream and being able to give him this joy was one of the greatest gifts I felt I bestowed upon him.
My chosen path of life was heavily influenced and supported by dad. And I thank him for it, this job which became my hobby because I love it, was able to many a time provide to his medical needs in conjunction with his doctor- Dr Richard Joseph and my husband Dr Varma Deyalsingh. And I thank them for their contribution for allowing him to reach this milestone.
All of his children made him, this educator, proud, with our educational pursuits.
When I went to Jamaica in 1983 we had no email, Skype or WhatsApp, we had something better… actual handwritten letters from my father .
I still have those he wrote to me. These letters I cherish with all my heart.
Two days ago, I perused them and it was as if his voice was speaking to me.
There were the common factors in each letter:
- to remember God in my life;
- to have faith in God and success will follow; and
- to study hard and not study boys… well my mother knew about Varma but I had a panic attack that my dad would find out I was studying more than just books.
Imagine years later when I eventually presented Varma to him I was still wondering what would be his reaction and if he would give his blessings.
Even after I got married, I could not cut my navel string as I moved in behind his house ensuring I would get my mother’s soup every Saturday and the watchful, protective eye of my father.
Being the youngest I was the most spoilt.
I remember when dad was principal at Fishing Pond Presbyterian school, he would sometimes take me with him to spend the day. It was an hour’s drive to and fro but even there I was spoilt and thoroughly enjoyed every second of it.
Dad, I love you for what you have instilled in me, I feel gutted that you have left but I know you would find peace and love once more in the arms of mom and both of you would look down and hopefully see us, your children living in the spirit as you both taught us.
Rest In Peace my dear dad and know that we all love you.