Monrovia – At long last, Rep. Adolph Lawrence was laid to rest last Friday’s evening at the Kaiser Lawn in Brewerville City, outside Monrovia, following a funeral mass at the Sacred Heart Cathedral on Broad and Ashmun Streets.
Report by Gerald C. Koinyeneh, [email protected]
The funeral proceedings began with a march with the flag-draped coffin led by Nights of Marshall, colleagues and family members of the fallen lawmaker including his widow, Senator Nyonblee Karnga-Lawrence amid tight security.
Crowd lined the streets and gathered at the entrance of the Church to witness the event with some jostling and fighting to find their way in the Church but were blocked by the security guards who were on sight to abort any recurrence of the previous day’s event that robbed Rep. Lawrence a state funeral; something “he duly deserved.”
At the Funeral Mass
In her eulogy, Vice President Jewel Howard Taylor described him as a patriot and a politician beyond party lines who cared about the institutions of government, the constitution and the rule of law.
Addressing the congregation of mourners, she said this of the fallen statesmen: “He believes that those institutions and laws were the essences of our democracy and unity. He was a friend who believed in open and honest arguments. He was bold and audacious and an independent thinker. That’s why he had so many friends across the aisle. We will miss him.”
VP Taylor’s eulogy was to the delight of the majority of the mourners including family members and friends as they were nodding and responding to the VP as she hit her lines.
“Hon. Lawrence was very true to his word because he never minced them whenever he spoke on the issue affecting our country. He was a hero who did not fear anything.”
Earlier, The Liberian Senate was led by Senate pro Tempore Albert Chie who stated that Rep. Lawrence was one of the ‘resourceful and brightest’ lawmakers at the Legislature.
He added that the late lawmaker was a friend and his frequent visit at the Senate’s Wing of the Capitol was not only to see his wife but to help the Senate in crafting essential documents and providing pieces of advice.
In their tribute, members of the Independent Legislative Caucus led by Rep. Larry Younquoi (Nimba County District #8) were visibly recognized by their red hats and constantly referring to their fallen colleagues as a lion, vowed to carry his unfinished work including his communications and bills he sponsored.
“Our red signifies that our struggle has not ended. We will remember your letters that are yet to be addressed. You are not the only persons who were aware that Monrovia and Paynesville cities were filthy but you decided to seek the solution and we will continue the struggle,” declared Rep. Francis Dopoe (River Gee County District #3), who delivered the eulogy on behalf of the group.
One of the highlights of the funeral was when renowned Catholic Sister Mary Laurene Browne’s tribute. In her eulogy, Sister Browne lamented that Rep. Lawrence’s life testified “beautifully to the value of a human person and this why we have assembled today in our number.”
She added: “Secondly, Adolph’s life bore testimony to the power of goodness. I have received calls and messages from people from three continents. Some of them I do not know and some of them I will never meet. But what most of them were saying he was a good man. He had a good soul. He was so very kind. Those are the likes of words delivered,’ she averred.
Sister Laurene Browne, who explained that she and the deceased were related by blood and served as a mother-figure to him, thanked his friends, relatives and colleagues for their support and called on the next lawmaker who will replace him to continue the work left by him; especially the provision of scholarships to dozens of students of Montserrado County District #15.
Said Sister Browne: “To his colleagues from the Legislature, to his colleagues in government, thank you for the support given him. For those who saw him as an enemy or as a foe, you missed out on a beautiful and transparent friendship.”
Sister added: “Because of the many scholarships that he had ongoing in Logan Town, I appealed to you personally that what is due him in cash will be converted to pay the fees of these students so that they are not left stranded. To the haters, I only ask that may God mercy, God’s love filled your heart and to us who loved Adolph and mourn his passing that our heart will have absolutely nothing against you.”