The following eulogy (edited) was delivered by Lynette King-Taitt at the December 30 funeral Mass for her mother, Gwendoline Hilda King at St Theresa’s RC Church, Malick, Barataria.
Today let us celebrate the life of Gwendoline King. She was born on May 30, 1925 and died on December 24, 2017, Christmas Eve. She was the daughter of Fredrica Phill-Romain and John Cadiz. She had one brother, Hilary Moses, who passed away. Her childhood took her to many areas in Trinidad which included San Fernando, La Brea and Laventille.
As she moved along she made many friends some of whom were her friends up to today. She was married to Clement King, a secondary school teacher in December 1946 and that union produced four children, Gerald and Michael (both deceased), Lynette and Pamela.
She attended Osmond High School which she found was one of the best schools in Port of Spain at that time. She excelled from entry and was a high academic achiever. This resulted in a Grade 2 Certificate, performing creditably in Mathematics, which was her first love.
From the age of 19 years, she taught at Richmond Street Boys’ Primary, St Ursula’s, St Phillips and then to Carapichaima RC. She then went to the Teachers’ Training College for a period of one year. Upon graduating, she was appointed as a Teacher 1 at Bourg Mulatresse RC where she taught for many years, and then later transferred to Malick Girls’ RC. After many years there, she retired as the Vice- Principal and ended her career, spanning over four decades. I have witnessed many big men and women still calling her “miss”; she must have left a lasting mark on them.
Mom or as she was commonly called ‘Miss King’ made a wise decision to choose teaching as a career as she thoroughly enjoyed this while caring for her charges. She often wore a radiant smile and could never be accused of being selfish or proud while coming to the rescue of pupils in times of financial needs.
Mom was never one to hide her light under a bushel. God bestowed her with numerous talents, qualities and redeeming characteristics, these she shared with others.
Some parents insisted that their children be under her watchful eyes as she was known to be a no-nonsense person and discipline was high on her agenda both at home and school. She was a truly wonderful person to know, full of humour, and enjoyed making cheeky remarks to the males. Mom enjoyed a rich rewarding life doing what she loved best, attending to her roses and chatting with her friends. She loved roses.
Mom enjoyed a hot meal at school every lunch time, Monday to Friday. These delicious meals were prepared by Ms Cromwell from Second Street, Barataria.
She was known for wearing very high heels and wearing a handkerchief on her shirt collar behind her neck.
Her retirement function and Mass was held in this very church, several years ago. Mom loved to write and has had many pen pals over the years.
May her soul rest in peace.