This memorial website was created in everlasting and loving memory of our Mother and Grandmother, who departed us 10 years to this day. We celebrate her life and give glory to God. Her legacy continues to be a testament in our lives and a tribute for generations to come.
Mrs Abisola Morenike Rowaiye was born on Sunday, the 5th of October, 1941 at Oshogbo, Osun State. She was born to Late Pa. Joshua Adeyemo Onayemi of the then Post and Telegraph establishment, and Late Ma. Christiana Adetunji Onayemi, a renowned teacher. Both parents are from Ijebu-Ode in Ogun State. Abisola was the 2nd of their seven children.
She had her Primary School Education at Oroki Girls’ School, Oshogbo in 1946. The following year when her father was transferred from Oshogbo to Ibadan she continued her primary education at St. James’ School, Oke-Bola, Ibadan.
Subsequently, in view of the prevalent frequent transfer possibilities of Papa in those days, her parents thought it would be expedient for their children to remain in one location for reasonably long periods of time to prevent incessant disruption of their education. She was therefore sent to live in Ijebu-Ode with her aunt ……Mama Ilesha and Papa Ilesha (The Rt Rev I. G. A Jadesimi). Clergymen did not seem to get moved about as often as civil servants!
She continued her primary education uninterrupted at Christ Church School, Porogun, Ijebu-Ode from late 1947 through 1954.
From Porogun she went to the Anglican Girls’ Secondary Modern School at Igbeba, Ijebu-Ode from 1955 to 1956. She would not, however, settle for just a secondary modern education. Therefore, she did not rest until she found her way to St. Anne’s School, Molete, Ibadan for her Secondary Grammar School Education from 1957 to 1960 where she obtained the WASC.
Thereafter she went to Ibadan Grammar School in 1961 for 1 year post school certificate lectures in science subjects which were not taught then at St. Anne’s. She proceeded to Christ School, Ado-Ekiti (1962 – 1963) where she obtained her Higher School Certificate (HSC). She went on to the University of Ife (now Obafemi Awolowo University), Ife in 1964, where she obtained a Bachelor of Science degree in Chemistry in 1968. In between her University Education, she participated in the MINEX exchange programme at Michigan State University, Michigan, USA in the summer of 1966.
On the 12th of October, 1968 she got married to Mr. Isaac Oluremi Rowaiye who hails from Oke-Sopen, Ijebu-Igbo, Ogun State. The marriage was blessed with 5 children. Indeed, Abisola was a mother among mothers. She brought up her children to be of high spiritual, moral and academic standards.
Abisola was not only a mother among mothers, but also a teacher among teachers. She was a teacher right from her Higher School Certificate days at St. Anne’s School, Ibadan (Jan – Aug 1964), even unto her dying days (Aug – Sept 2000) when she helped with the homework of her nephew and nieces in Barrie, ON, Canada, till she was not strong enough to do so anymore.
She taught at many schools, some of which are: Manuwa Memorial Grammar School, Iju-Odo, via Okitipupa (June 4, 1968 – Dec 31, 1968); St. Anne’s School, Ibadan (Jan 1, 1969 – Aug, 31 1972); Iroko Community Grammar School, Iroko (Aug 1, 1972 – Aug 31, 1972); Isabatudeen Girls’ Grammar School, Ibadan (Sept 1, 1972 – Aug 31, 1976). She was appointed as Vice-Principal, Teaching and Administration, Ahmaddiya Grammar School, Ibadan in September 1976. In September 1977, she was promoted to the post of Principal. In September 1980, she was appointed as Principal at Eleyele High School, Ibadan. She retired voluntarily from this post in June 1986. In July 1986, she took up an appointment as Head Tutor at Top Tutors, Ilupeju, a Remedial School at Ilupeju, Lagos State. She made a remarkable impact at this Tutorial College. She retired voluntarily from Top Tutors in 1992.
She set up a Tutorial College – Summit Tutors at Isolo, Lagos. However, she being a perfectionist was not satisfied with the response by students and teachers and so in 1996 she decided to suspend the project hoping to resume at a more auspicious time and suitable environment.
Abisola’s doors were always open to everybody for academic assistance all her life. Not only did she coach her own children, she also coached many of their friends, her own nieces and nephews and friends of the family.
Abisola was a devout Christian. She spent most of her school days with her Aunt, Yeye Jadesimi and Bishop Jadesimi, with her siblings, cousins and friends in the Parsonage. She therefore was well grounded in the Christian Faith. She carried unto her matrimonial home such Christian principles she had grasped. She was a regular parishioner at the Chapel of the Resurrection, University of Ibadan, Ibadan where she was an active member of the Women’s League. She also participated in the ‘Tuesday Bible Class’. Later she was an astounding parishioner at the Chapel of the Healing Cross, Idi-Araba, Lagos where she was a member of the Fellowship of Peace, a member of the Guild of Ushers and Welcomers, one of the co-ordinators of the ‘Breakfast Fellowship Hour’ and a permanent , tireless and dependable worker in the Treasury Department.
Abisola was a very hard working person. She did everything she had to do thoroughly and to the best of her ability. She was a selfless person and was ever ready to give to her children even forgoing her own needs. She was a very healthy person with very high hygiene and health standards. However, in May, 2000 she had some health complaints and then in August 2000, she was diagnosed with cancer in Barrie, Ontario. All with whom she spoke with and those who saw her at that time, testified that she was very much at peace with God, others and herself.
Her ”twin” younger sister – Mrs A.O. Bako (Mama Lokoja), deeply touched by her calmness in the face of death, commended her for the courage she exuded. Abisola attributed it to the loads of encouragement she was receiving from loved ones in Nigeria and the Diaspora, and most importantly the strength from Jesus, the Solid Rock. This is reminiscent of the 3rd and 4th stanzas of Dr. I. Watt’s hymn which goes like this:
We asked them whence there victory came;
They, with united breadth,
Ascribe their conquest to the Lamb,
Their triumph to His death.
They marked the footsteps that He trod,
His zeal inspired their breast;
And following their Incarnate God,
Possess the promised rest.