Posted by News Express | 31 October 2012 | 5,764 times
It’s finally over for Olawunmi Thorpe, Ph.D, whose heartbreaking story we broke about this evening. Dr. Thorpe died just as a Lagos-based NGO touched by his plight was making efforts to evacuate and take care of him.
“My dear brother, the man is dead,” journalist and social worker Larry Happiday, through whom News Express got to know of Dr. Thorpe’s plight, said a few minutes ago. “We just came to check on him only to be told that he died around 5pm. His body is still lying here close to the railway station by Fagba Bus-Stop. We don’t even know what to do but I wish there’s away to give him a befitting burial,” Happiday added.
News Express had called Happiday to relate the news that help was finally on the way for Dr. Thorpe. Upon reading our story, Olola Seun Akioye, a senior official at Environmental Rights Action (ERA), had sent across a message: “Sir urgent, has the man been taken out of the street? Where in Iju was he found? Can we get some hospitals to take him in?”
News Express had gotten to know about Dr. Thorpe’s plight about 4pm today when Happiday, a Lagos-based journalist and company executive raised an alarm on the troubled academic’s ordeal.
“Here lies a silver spoon struggling with death, rejected, abandoned, unloved and unforgiven by his family. This picture may be relevant to any of the followings: Major Mrs Thorpe, Mr. Bode Thorpe and Ms. Gloria Adeyemi-Lawson. Does anyone know any of the above mentioned? Kindly ask them to check that this is not their own Olawunmi Thorpe,” Happiday, a Mass Communication graduate with two decades of journalism and political activism before settling down to training of manpower in the area of advertisement sales and self improvement courses, wrote on his Facebook page.
According to Happiday, “Born to a famous Abeokuta family, this man is almost dead and God have mercy! Can someone please get the paternal or maternal family to collect this man, no matter his many, many sins? God forgives and expects us to forgive too: even Olawunmi. Don't let him die here, by the Iju Railway line please.”
Happiday soon uploaded the photo of an almost lifeless Dr. Thorpe with the following message: “Born a silver spoon, now see how this Ph.D holder is left to die in a heap of rubbish: desolate, deserted and unloved. I understand that Dr. Olawunmi Thorpe holds a Ph.D in English and once worked at the Punch newspapers. Can anyone who knows any of eight (8) or so children please get them to pick their father and allow to get a dignified last moment please?”
Happiday, CEO of the Ikoyi, Lagos-based Myhappiday Communications, could not give details of how Dr. Thorpe fell terribly on hard times.
He said in response to a reader’s question in this regard: “There is really no time to ask these questions and he is not even able to speak any more nor to get up and do the normal conveniences. The pictures I have are worse but for decency sake, let's get his paternal or maternal families to get him away from here please. If you know any of them kindly contact them. I understand that he may be related to the Thorpe and Adeyemi-Lawsons of Abeokuta, Ogun State.”
Contacted by News Express, Happiday, who is a pastor, spoke of how he and another pastor have on their own tried to help Dr. Thorpe.
“Dr. Thorpe has lost speech and is unable to get up to help himself,” said Happiday. “I have been involved in efforts to get him off the street and have, in association with a co-pastor been trying to get his family to attend to him but they would not bulge. His case is clearly beyond tokenism now and so we need everyone's help to get his family to pick him or the government in the alternative.”
*Photo, courtesy Larry Happiday, shows the late Dr. Thorpe in the rubbish heap where he died this evening.
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