Imperial Primary teacher remembered as ‘legendary icon’

Imperial Primary School held a memorial service on Friday January 27 for the late Clement Abrahams.

Imperial Primary School senior teacher Clement Abrahams will be remembered as a “legendary icon.”

Mr Abrahams passed away on Friday January 20.

During his expansive career at Imperial Primary, Mr Abrahams was the “masterful tactician behind team Imperial’s victories in the A-Section of the then Mitchell’s Plain Primary Schools Sports Association,” said Imperial Primary deputy principal, Alfonso Smith.

He was loved by the communities of Eastridge, Beacon Valley and the surrounding areas, said Mr Smith.

Imperial Primary School teacher Clement Abrahams passed away on Friday January 20.

Mr Smith said the attendance at the memorial service held at the school last Friday also spoke volumes of what he meant to his former pupils. Mr Abrahams was a third generation teacher.

Neighbouring school principals paid tribute to Mr Abrahams, such as Northwood principal, Leon Jones, Beacon View Primary principal, Edna Hockey, AZ Berman Primary principal, Mervyn Stofberg and retired principal of Meadowridge Primary, Norman Daniels.

Colin Baron, principal of Imperial Primary, said he had lost more than just a colleague, but a man who proved to be a great friend. He was a great man and an even greater teacher to the pupils.

Edna Hockey, Beacon View Primary principal, pays tribute to Mr Abrahams. PICTURE: MARSHA BOTHMA

Ms Hockey said Mr Abrahams’ family should hold dear to his memory that will live on within them.

“He was a great friend. He might be gone but never forgotten, you will always remember the jolly person that he was. His memory lives in all of us everyday,” she said.

Mr Jones said he had known Mr Abrahams for 40 years.

“He was a confidant; his presence was always synonymous with happiness and humour. He had a brilliant smile. He was enthusiastic and passionate about teaching. No words I utter can bring you comfort. I salute you and rest in peace, Mr AB.”

Mr Stofberg said they’d worked together at Imperial Primary. They were very good friends and colleagues in the profession. “He was the light and spirit of the gathering. Never spoke ill of anyone. He will be remembered, thank you for your service, Mr Abrahams.”

Parents, pupils and staff attended the memorial service for Mr Abrahams on Friday January 27.

Imperial Primary School teacher, Gloudine Groep, said he was passionate about God. “He was a jovial and humble person. To the boys, your father loved you and was very proud of you. Till we meet again, Mr Abrahams.”

Pastor Vincent Rhoda, former Departmental Head at Imperial Primary, said Mr Abrahams loved his two sons.

“Your dad made sure that he prepared you for life. You will come into full explosion, his life was to prepare you for many things. Stand strong as young men and make your father proud,” he said.

Both of his son’s attended Imperial Primary School.

Mr Abrahams’ son, Luther Abrahams, 30, said his father told them to not take life too seriously, as they should spread laughter, as there is a time to rejoice and happiness to look forward to. “It was challenging learning about his death but in the end it was calmness. We will miss his presence,” he said.

Mr Abrahams other son, Craig Abrahams, 26, said his father was a storyteller. He could tell you a story like a movie; a great depiction of the stories told. “He taught us life lessons and he was a joker with such humour. “The radio doesn’t play anymore. I just miss his presence. He was always sitting in the backyard and he will be missed. He has taught us many things and we will hold it dear to us,” he said.

In 1985, Mr Abrahams completed a Teachers Diploma specialising in Physical Education from Hewat College of Education.

In 1986, he worked at Yellowwood Primary in Tafelsig. In 1987 Mr Abrahams was employed as the Physical Education teacher at Imperial Primary and later on became a class teacher with the exceptional skill of turning a simple lesson plan into a masterful teaching moment. In 2003, he was promoted to senior teacher.

During this time he displayed his love for nature and the plant kingdom, and had the ability to draw pupils into his world.