Date of death: 22-11-2008
A tribute to Carlton Eugene Figg, a loving husband, father,brother,grandfather and friend. Please feel free to write you thoughts and any memories of him so ...
A tribute to Carlton Eugene Figg, a loving husband, father,brother,grandfather and friend. Please feel free to write you thoughts and any memories of him so that we can all remember him with fondness.
Tribute created by:
6 months, 2 weeks
I am blessed and honoured to have known Carlton, who was a dear and trustworthy friend of my parents. I will never forget the risks he took when my father passed away under mysterious circumstances. While everyone was running around like headless chooks due to the confusion and mayhem of my father's passing, Carlton was very much at work in the background - digging, probing and investigating the circumstances that led to my father's demise. And now looking back in hindsight, he risked his life considering the dangerous, unsavoury, unscrupulous and criminal elements involved in dad's death. So it is with good reason that I consider him a 'fearless man with nerves of steel". And to coin the phrase "the pen is mightier than the sword", it was with surgical precision that Carlton struck each and every person down through his editorials and newspaper articles regarding the people that were responsible for my dad's death. In tribute, I salute you and applaud you Carlton. It is very rare to see real men like yourself. And it was an honour to have known you and have a friend like you. May God Bless you always and may your soul rest in peace. You will always be missed, loved and remembered.
10 months, 3 weeks
Though his smile is gone forever
And his hand we cannot touch;
Still we have so many memories
Of our brother whom we love so much.
His memory is our keepsake
With which we will never part;
God has him in His keeping,
We have him in our hearts.
Happy Birthday Carl....wish you were here with us.
We who love you sadly miss you,
As it dawns another year,
In our lonely hours of thinking,
Thoughts of you are ever near.
You are not forgotten brother,
Nor will you ever be......
As long as life and memories last
We will remember thee.
We miss you in so many ways,
We miss the things you used to say....
And when old times we do recall,
It's then we miss you most of all.
Rest in peace Carl......you are forever in my memories & prayers.
I love you always and forever.
Tea time was a bit of a ritual in our house. Tea had to be served at 3 O'Clock every day or dad would yell out "it's Tea O'Clock!'. Of course whether he got his tea on time or not depended on mum's mood, so he had to be on his best behaviour! After many years of mum serving him his tea, dad finally learned to make his own cup of chai. And then the tables were turned - mum got served her tea instead. Dad loved making tea and insisted that it be soaked for exactly three minutes and not boiled like 'dhaba chai'. He's pour the hot water over the tea leaves in the tea pot and let it soak for exactly three minutes, before serving up with milk and sugar. I never had a cup of his tea as I'd already left home and was working in Dubai when he took to the kitchen, but mum, who always filled me in on what dad was up to, swears he made a jolly good cuppa.
My recollection of Carl from our school days is that he always had a unique sense of humour which he maintained despite his illness.After several years we renewed contact and his email in answer to mine expressed surprise that I sang briefly in a group in London most of the songs..........of course Elvis.! I never had you down as an Elvis fan Mike always thought you were a 'crooner' churning out those Pat Boone ballards. At least he did not have to convert me!!
1 year, 6 months
Reading the newspapers every Sunday morning is something that comes straight to mind.. Daddy and his pile of every English newspaper the city published by his side... I'd try to sneak one out and he'd say " I haven't read that one as yet" Then he'd hand me the comic page!!! hahaha, he knew what I was after..
He loved the fact that we'd sit around with him reading his newspapers, a habit I still have, even though I'll go straight for the comic page first :)
Also when he would write his articles he would get me to read it out loud to him at least three times... I still remember him typing away and then calling me and saying " just read this". I loved to read them... I would die laughing half the time and he would quietly smile knowing that he had done a good job.
The purpose of making me read his articles over and over again, now when I look back was to teach me how to write properly. I owe my English reading and writing skills and sense of humour to you dad even though I would never be half as good as you were. Thank you.
In my growing up years, Dad never had the pleasure of finding his slippers under his bed when he returned home from a hard days work. That's where he would leave them when he changed into his impeccably polished shoes for work. The minute he would head out the door, I would slip into his slippers. For some reason, I always loved to walk around in his oversized slippers with the heels jutting way out behind my considerably smaller feet. He was a size 9, I think, and I a mere 3 or so at the time. His big slippers just felt incredibly comfortable. When dad was on evening shift, he'd come home by around 9 at night and go straight to his bed to change into his slippers and I'd hear "who's taken my slippers?" He knew full well who had taken them, but this was a ritual on all the days he was on evening shift. When I heard him, I'd scurry into the room, kick his slippers off near him and take off again. What a pain I was! On the days he was on night shift, I got to keep his slippers all evening as we'd be asleep when he'd return. Now when I find my slippers missing from my bedside, I yell at the kids. One of them will have inadvertently kicked them under the bed while playing nearby. When I lose my temper, I think of dad. What patience he must have had. Why did he never tire of me taking his slippers and ban me from touching them?
In Nov 2008 when I went home to bury him, I slipped into his slippers one last time, but he just lay there lifeless. I'm taking your slippers, dad I told him.
Memories - Boy which one to pick! Yes, there are so many but these are some that really stand out for me- and that is Carlton,being my younger brother, always came to me seeking advice. Being me I would often give him the wrong advice and watch him get into trouble over it. Then there was this one - We were all invited to a party in Patna and Carlton as always was dressed in full black-head to toe. During the evening people would get up on a platform and perform some song. Well Carlton got up to perform his version of Elvis. During the shaking and rolling he rolled right off the platform and popped his ankle! Lucky for us a doctor was there too and he popped the ankle back into place. Poor Carl was sidelined for the rest of the evening. Who ever knew Carl also knew his knack of getting into a lot of trouble. One day while we were all in the house the front door burst open and Carl came flying through yelling - "Close the door and call the police!" We just got the door bolted when a gang of young guns started banging on the door asking for us to turn Carl over to them. Dad very calmly told them that the police were on their way and that they can ask them for the favor!! With that they quickly took off and Dad wasted no time in getting Carl on to the train and off to Lucknow. Yes, that was how he ended up living in Lucknow where the rest is history. Yes, he may be gone but in spirit he is still with us and is having a darn good laugh at the lot of us. Brother, remember the argument we had - I was to go before you but you pulled a fast one on me and took your exit first! why did you leave us so soon I miss you, your smile and that laugh, so very much!! Looking forward to seeing you again some day.
Memories......there are so very many, how is it possible to list them all. Growing up with Carl as my brother was the very best thing that could have been handed to me. He was funny, helpful and always full of advice. It was his funny side that I loved the most (his advice was beginning to get a bit too pricy for me LOL:). It was very surprising to me on our visit to India in 2001, that Carl even remembered my utter fear of "creepy crawly" creatures. One night when I had climbed into bed, he came upstairs with Erle and I recall giving him crap for climbing up all those stairs. Well, he had his reasons.....he had given Erle a plastic snake, with instructions to throw it at me and stand by and watch the fun. We-e-e-l-l-l, to them it was hilarious, but to me.....I screamed, dusted frantically and jumped all the way across the other beds in the room and made a quick exit. Oh yes, I have that memory so vivid in my mind, and the sound of Carl's laughter is so very clear. God, I do so miss you brother. Why did you have to go so soon..........we had just only gotten back together after so many many years.
Dad's dream was to have all his family live together in one big house. He was never quite the practical sort! He wanted this great big house, so all his children and their families could live together and be close to him. He even dreamed up what it would look like - a big compound surrounded by units that would be occupied by our respective families. No kidding, he really thought that would happen some day if he persevered enough. That was how much family mattered to him. What he did not count on was life taking us all down different paths, to different parts of the world, miles and miles away from him and mum.
I remember the day I announced to him that I was leaving to come to the Middle East. I had a job offer in hand. I was going to be a journalist in the UAE. Although I expected no kudos from him, what he said made me quite mad and caused me to stomp out of the room. "You're committing professional suicide, you know that." I just stared at him, said not a word and walked out. I was an idiot. He did not deserve that. He was right. I knew that. But even while he hurt me, I was not quite sure I wanted to leave. I wanted him to reassure me that I was doing the right thing. But who was I kidding. Dad minced no words, said it like it was. He said exactly what I knew he would say, and that's why it hurt. But it pains me today to think of how I treated him. perhaps a civilised discussion would have helped. Not that I would have changed my mind, but at least I would not be regretting treating him like that today. Lesson learnt, but alas too late. Words once spoken, cannot be taken back. Actions cannot be undone.
That was 14 years ago. Of course that little spat was short-lived and we made up. Dad finally even agreed that perhaps my moving out might have been a good thing after all. The UAE is not a bad place to be, it's unlike any other place in the Gulf. I regret though that dad never visited Dubai. It would have changed his perception entirely. I made a couple of home videos which he watched with interest, but did not have the chance to do much more. Regrets overwhelm me. Death has cheated me of some very special times with my dad. And even more sadly, my children will never know their grandfather.