Great men do not die, their legacies are forever great even after death. It is indeed an iconic demise and great loss to the entire country, this as the Chairman, Achieving Greatness Limited, Mr. Emmanuel Ojibo mourned big-time friend who was a gallantry Nigerian US-based Army, Kennedy Ovabore fondly called “KEN DE GREAT”
Mr. Emmanuel however remained shocked having taken to his social media handle with Ken De Great Story Untold, therefore paying historic tributes. Ken was indeed Great:
“Tribute to Ken De Great!
We grew up with fear and admiration for each other from a distance with the desire to survive and overcome our common enemy, POVERTY. Each day was a call to duty, you either starve or complement your parents struggle to provide food for the family. I remember the early days when we hawked for our parents (as barrack boys there were only a few exemptions), I also remember his mum told me yesterday how he had the Midas touch for selling everything you placed on his head. He used to cross to ilupeju to sell coconuts and mangoes just to mention a few.
Ken as Bobby Kendo.
He was one of the local champions of our time; you could easily describe him as the character “Okonkwo” played in Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe. He was feared and always ready to defend you so long you are of ikeja cantonment. Like his mum said, he can travel from USA to Nigeria just to fight for his own. This earned him the name Bobby Kendo! The name later became a household name.
He was born and raised in the time of struggle, at this stage ken’s survival instinct kicked in doing all sorts including what we call “babanbola”. Just to make ends meet while some were getting involved in crime little did he know that it was training necessary for his success of later years.
Ken as a Marshall.
He was a freedom fighter just like Mandela. Those who knew him in his days in Ekpoma will attest to this. He never resigned and was always ready to do everything humanly possible to change the cause of history. This part will not be possible without giving credit to someone he always talked about in person of Joel Odige for making him know that if others had gone to school and succeeded, it’s possible for him also to do that.
He didn’t only finish his first degree he later went to UNN where he also obtained an MSC. All this couldn’t amount to much after graduation the reality of Nigeria hit him really hard to the extent he was sleeping on a carton in front of Mr Biggs Maryland. He never lost hope. He knew he had only one option, which is to wake up every day to begin afresh!
Ken, the Great.
Some are born great, some have greatness within them and some achieve greatness.
The day our part crossed in 2003 can never be forgotten. Whilst making plans to travel to the UK I ran into Ken somewhere around Oshodi Barrack as we used to call it.
He was so excited to see me after so many years we quickly shared compliments and experiences. This eventually led to him knowing I was leaving the country soon, he also showed strong interest and I helped point him in the right direction, the rest is history.
Ken, the Big Name.
We later met in the UK after a few months and years went by. On the streets he had earned himself the title “Big name”. A lot has gone under the bridge in the struggle to survive the cold and racism. At a point he had to stay in an area called Bermosey which is known for its extreme racism and as usual he survived that. He always wanted more and never settled. He got married to his long time school lover and had his first daughter in the UK which we all celebrated with him. God blessed him with more children which he loved so dearly!
Ken, the man of Justice.
He always hated injustice. I remembered when a fellow barrack boy deceived us and took our money in the UK in the guise of trying to help us settle. He never seemed to forget that.
He also fought his friend Igada who played my brother 419 as we call it.
Ken Marshal, Bobby Kendo, Big Name, As Commando.
He joined the US Army and became a Ranger and was deployed to Afghanistan where he fought alongside other allied forces and won so many honors. He was a gallant officer until his mission beyond.
Ken the great conqueror, left his foot print beyond four continents, Africa, Asia, Europe and America. He made lots of friends and will be greatly missed.
I was chatting with our common friend Philip from Sweden who remembered one of ken old time song in his word
“He was a very funny guy. Am listening to Hotel California in tribute to him – he loved that song” copied
You are our hero and we will always celebrate you.
PAYEB (Peace Advocacy and Youth Empowerment in the Barracks)
With deep heart we regret to announce your further mission to the world beyond because we know you still have a lot to offer.
Sadly your plans of coming back to set up a security firm sharing your experiences to help the security challenges we face in Nigeria will no longer come to light.
Indeed you will be greatly miss, never a dull moment with you! One day you were filled with double lives and the next we can’t just explain. It still feels like you traveled like you do usually. The reality cannot just set in. Everyday seem to wake one up to imagination what we would have done and couldn’t.
Only God knows best! You made your peace with your maker as you told us, we also heard and watched you making videos from services you attended in mountain of fire church ATL.
God alone can make a man new! Rest on with your maker the struggle is over for you! I pray that God will grant you a smooth passage to eternal life!”
See captions and gallery below: