My darling little sister, you left me for good just one year ago, without even a goodbye. A year has passed since your tragic end, but I am still unable to come to terms with it. I keep wondering why God had to call you so very suddenly, when you and your devoted husband Raja were rendering such invaluable service to humanity.
Both of you healed countless people, often without remuneration; you comforted them in their distress, and helped them financially and otherwise. Your healing hands with the golden magic touch healed, and even extended the lifespan of thousands. They mourn your irreparable loss.
My darling sister, you were so very close to me, your Loku Akka. Apart from being my little sister, whom I had a hand in nurturing, you were my best friend and confidante. I shared with you my troubles and sorrows, especially after the demise of my dear husband six years ago.
I recall the glorious holidays we spent with you and your dear husband in your beautiful homes in Anuradhapura and elsewhere. A few months before your untimely death, you invited me to spend a most enjoyable holiday with the two of you in Welimada and Nuwara Eliya. Did we ever imagine that that would be our last holiday together? You were so full of life and joie de vivre. I cannot believe that you, with your lovely charming smile and endearing ways, are no more.
As a little girl you had beautiful looks and charming manners. You had a coterie of admirers. As you grew up in beauty, grace and wisdom, you attracted many, but it was Dr. Raja Johnpulle, whom you met at the Medical Faculty, who won your heart.
The two of you made a wonderful couple, devoted and closely knit. Raja was your entire life and you were his. You were an excellent wife to him, stood by him at all times, good and bad, and supported him in the pursuit of his dreams and ambitions.
Although politics held no interest for you, you supported him in his political life. That was his other “love”. Tragically and ironically, it was this close support that brought about your untimely end. Both of you went hand in hand together to meet your Maker. You had been together for 42 years. In His divine wisdom, God took both you away together. Neither of you could have survived without the other, the bond was too close.
Genevieve, you who we all fondly called Jenny, were everything that parents could wish for in a daughter: dutiful, loving, considerate and very clever. You were always first in class in school, so much so that I would tease you and say, “Why don't you give somebody else a chance, at least once?” We, your siblings, were very proud of you – your beauty, charm and endearing ways.
You wisely chose the medical profession. Your healing hands have healed many a desperate patient, especially the women, who simply adored you. For years you and your husband treated the people of Anuradhapura and elsewhere. Your treatment was so very effective. You had charming and friendly manners. People from miles around would flock to your dispensary for treatment.
You have left behind three lovely children and two adorable grandchildren. Words fail me when I realise what a priceless treasure they have lost in both of you – such wonderful, caring and loving parents and grandparents. God has given and He has taken away, but He continues to give them the courage and fortitude to bear their tremendous loss.
Just one-and-a-half months before your demise, your house and dispensary came under arson attack. You lost all your possessions. You lost everything except what you were wearing at the time. My darling sister, I could not imagine you in such a plight, you who were always so tastefully and impeccably dressed, and such a pleasure to behold.
When the whole world crashed around you, God gave you the courage and fortitude to bear your tremendous loss. I admire the way you stoically resigned yourself to your calamity. A few days after, you and your husband celebrated your 42nd wedding anniversary at your daughter’s home. Looking at the photograph taken on that occasion, nobody would have dreamt that you had just experienced the worst calamity in your life.
Genevieve and Raja, my loving sister and brother-in-law, I am grateful for all you did for me and mine, for all you were to me personally, and for all the glorious times we shared together.
It has been said that death is not the end of life but rather the putting out of the lamp when the dawn breaks.
Let us rejoice in the fact that the dawn of eternal happiness has arrived for Raja and my darling sister Genevieve.