THE BLOG

Dear Uncle Kathy, The Fight Was Yours, And It Is Now Ours

The privilege to have known you have enriched my life in indescribable ways. And when no-one was around, again you stood tall for me.

28/03/2017 14:06 SAST | Updated 28/03/2017 14:06 SAST
Supplied
Ahmed Kathrada and Zelda la Grange.

Dear Uncle Kathy

My heart is heavy as we say our final farewell. It is too soon. It is always too soon.

You are free now. Yes indeed, free at last from the struggle for dignity, pride, humanity and principle. The fight was yours your entire life. The fight is now ours. You were suppose to retire and enjoy the fruits of your sacrifice. Yet you continued the fight.

Few people can claim that they fought until the end, like you did. For that we salute you. You always lead from the back, never seeking position, fame or fortune. Your duty was in serving and for the humility and simplicity with which you executed your duty to your country, we thank you.

I will never forget our first meeting in Tuynhuys, the skepticism with which our relationship started but that developed into a warm friendship. Not because of me but because of who you were. How I loved listening to your stories and your standard joke teasing Madiba when you told him repeatedly that he was the reason you went to prison. I can still clearly visualise Madiba's shoulders shrugging from laughter. I was privileged to witness a beautiful friendship between two men that grew stronger in respect as time progressed despite sometimes vastly disagreeing. You lived with complete conviction.

When there was a march you were right in front showing us how you can change the world without having to occupy position or having titles.

The privilege to have known you have enriched my life in indescribable ways. And when no-one was around, again you stood tall for me. I am deeply grateful for the time you afforded me for our few lunches and your favorite chocolate cake since Madiba's passing. I thank you for your generosity of spirit, your wisdom and most importantly being an example of how to be an active citizen. When there was a march you were right in front showing us how you can change the world without having to occupy position or having titles. How real leadership comes from character. I learnt from your example and I hope that I will never become conceited to disregard or disrespect the footprints you left.

I admire how you stood firm in the face of hypocracy. You were ridiculed but still you stood firm by your principle and conviction. We can only aspire to emulate your character.

Be still now Uncle Kathy. We will continue your legacy and the fight against any and all kinds of injustice in your honour.

Sincere condolences to Barbara, Zohra, Laloo and the entire family.

Hamba Kahle !