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WSC Community Members Extend Sympathy To Okubanjo Family

Posted: 21 September, 2012

WAYNE - Chief Oladotun Okubanjo, aman who sent his family across the North Atlantic Ocean to be educated at Wayne State College, passed away Aug. 21. Seven children and their mother, Edith Okubanjo, earned degrees at WSC while away from their home in Lagos, Nigeria.

"Oladotun Okubanjo entrusted Wayne State College with the education of his wife and children. He was an enthusiastic supporter of the higher education and certainly WSC. I will miss his visits. My sincerest condolences to his family,'' said Wayne State President Curt Frye.

The Okubanjo family included three sons, Olusegun, Afolabiyi, and Oluwatobi; and eight daughters, Adeola, Sola, Biola, Abayomi, Enitan, Olubolajimi, Olubukola, and Oluwaseun.

"Chief was a complex man. I know he was an important government official in Nigeria. I know that he loved his family deeply and always wanted the best for them even if that meant self-sacrifice. His wife and children often lived several thousand miles away from him in order to have a better education and a better life. They saw each other only a few times a year but he was in contact with them often. Chief was a strong and honorable man in his faith, his morals, and in his business dealings. He lived faith, family, friends, and honor," said Suzanne Penn, office assistant at the Wayne State College School of Arts and Humanities. "He had a great sense of humor and loved to tell stories. He was always very supportive of Edith and the kids and he loved coming to Wayne, America. I liked Chief and will miss his presence when the family comes to visit, which I hope they do again, soon."

The distance from Wayne, Neb. to Nigeria was never an obstacle for the Okubanjo family's education. AfterEdith traveled to Wayne from Lagos, Nigeria, to attend classes in 1981, seven of her children had the honor of wearing the same cap and gown that she wore when she was awarded her business management degree from Wayne State College in 1983.

When Edith Okubanjo came to WSC in the early 1980s to earn a bachelor's degree in two-and-a-half years, she brought her children with her. Afolabiyi Okubanjo was a 2003 Homecoming king candidate.

"My brother Afolabiyi (Jordan) was born here. I attended kindergarten and the first grade in Wayne. Ever since the first time we came here, we've had a special connection with this area,'' said Olusegun Okubanjo in an interview with Wayne State College Relations in 2001."When we first came, I'm sure it was difficult for my mother to be away from her spouse, my father, but they both knew it was an investment worth the difficulty. It's important for us to tell people that this is a good school.Everyone has been extremely kind and considerate of us.Wayne epitomizes the Nebraska spirit,"

Wayne State College, a regional, public four-year college located in northeast Nebraska, is a member of the Nebraska State College System.

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