Obituary: Tribute to founder of Harlow Afro Caribbean Association Olivert Abraham

Harlow is 70: Why I Came Here / Fri 2nd Apr 2021 at 09:33am

WITH gratitude to God almighty, the entire Abraham family and extended family, with regret, announce the summoning to glory, the passing of their patriarch and mentor Mr Olivert Kwesi Anfo Abraham of Harlow, aged 81 years.

Mr Olivert Abraham passed away peacefully in Princess Alexandra Hospital in Harlow on 12 February 2021 @ 15:50 after suffering a Myocardial Infarction (heart attack).

Mr Olivert Abraham, traditionally known as uncle Kwesi to family members, was born on 28 March 1939 in Cape Coast, Ghana.

His father was Joseph Dennis Abraham and his mother was Madam Hannah Maame Adjoa Nyaana.

At a tender age his family migrated to Nigeria so he did not attend school in Ghana but rather attended school in Nigeria in 1945, where all his siblings lived because his father worked as a civil servant. After completing his education, he went on to complete an apprenticeship, in P&T (Post and Telecommunication), before he moved back to Ghana in 1960.

Mr Olivert Abraham enlisted into the Ghana Naval Force in 1960’s as an Electronic Engineer. He met his childhood sweat-heart, Thelma Mary Jacobs, in Ghana; whom he later married in February 1968. They were married in Ghana and have three children between them, Mary Aba Yaana, Anthony Kwesi Mensah and Julius Kobina Ampah. He served in the Ghana Naval Force in Ghana and in the UK till 1970’s and left to continue the next chapter of his life.

Mr Olivert Abraham, came to the UK in 1968 and after completing his service in the Naval Force pursued a career in Electronic Engineering. After successful completion of his course, he worked in various capacities as Quality Assurance/Configuration Technician; and Qualification Test Engineer/Senior Test Technician. His work life encompasses, COSSOR (Raytheon Electronics Ltd), where he retired in 1996 after 25 years’ of commendable service. His illustrious career at COSSOR saw him leading a team to build and test Radar systems at Stansted, Heathrow, Manchester, Scotland and various other Airports around the country. After his retirement he continued to work on at CoMPEL Source PLC, ADC Bioscientific Ltd, Harlow Council and finally a Science (Physics) Technician Teacher at Presdales School Hertfordshire.

Support and voluntary community involvement were his passion in his active working and retirement life. He was the founding member of the Afro Caribbean Association and the Ghanaian Association in the late 1970’s and 1985 respectively. A humble self-taught man with immense character, knowledge and presence; whose steely single minded self determination pioneered in setting up solid foundations, structures and systems, which challenged the status quo, opened doors and paved the way for the youth and family groups to thrive in an otherwise very difficult and challenging time period for minority groups who were marginalized; he gave them a voice and brought about awareness and change in Harlow and surrounding areas. He setup a Saturday school within the Afro Caribbean community teaching Mathematics, English and other curricular activities to foster confidence and cultural identity within the community. He was actively involved in various events from fundraising raising for Sickle Cell Anaemia Research to holding Carnival Street celebrations to raise cultural awareness. 

He attended Council meetings for Harlow Community Relations Council (HCRC). He contributed in discussions on health issues specific to the local community and disseminated and distributed published health information to a broad range of the local community.  His broad community support extended to attending Police Community Forum on behalf of Harlow Community Relations Council (HCRC). 

He was a liaison between the local community at such meetings assisting to foster good relationship between the local police and the communities. As a secretary of the Local Harlow Community Association, he guided and supported the youth to source help from the Harlow council for a Youth Centre. 

In his retirement, Mr Olivert Abraham continued to offer his rich support and mentorship skill to his local community and beyond and all who came close to him. His cathartic sense of humour and his rich knowledge attracted a lot of local associations to seek his wisdom as Patron for Harlow Progressive Friends and Independent Women Association Harlow (Ghanaian Associations). 

Mr Olivert Abraham was a true beacon of light source for both his family and friends. A man of social engagements and community spirit who graced all occasions with his presence. No social engagement was too small or too big for him, be it birthday, christening, anniversary or fund-raising events.  A real family and community man often called “Father Abraham” because of his wise wisdom, his rich and accessible knowledge to all who sort his help. He was many things to his family and friends and has left his foot prints on all he touched. Mr Olivert Kwesi Anfo Abraham, Rest in Perfect Peace.

Funeral Announcement

FRIDAY 23rd April 2021

Service: Holy Cross Roman Catholic Church, Tracyes Rd, Harlow CM18 6JJ Time: 10am

Burial: Parndon Wood Cemetery & Crematorium, Parndon Wood Road, Harlow CM19 4SF Time: 12 Noon

Funeral Directors: T Cribb & Sons, Beckton Branch

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