SHESA MOURNS AN ICON
TRIBUTE TO BROTHER NORBERT SIMMS
Do people or events make history? In the context of SHESA history, the answer is overwhelmingly the former (people). One of such persons that have impacted the life of Sacred Heart College Mankon, and by extension to SHESANS is the Late Brother Norbert Simms (affectionately called krobo pidgin for bald head).
When the civil war ended in Nigeria, the Marist Brothers Society relocated their members to Cameroon and by choice to Sacred Heart College Mankon, not St. Joseph College Sasse.
Brother Norbert brought with him some personal character traits that were to imprint attitudes for a lifetime. He was very devoted to his calling and carrying out his duties with such selfless love both to the college and the neighbouring community that he naturally was a people magneto.
Brother Norbert was multi-dimensional; an all-rounder teacher and sportsman. In the classroom, Brother Norbert taught all the subjects, sitting in for absent teachers just to avoid a void in the class. As a sportsman, he was a player, a coach and a referee as the situation demanded. He brought Chemistry to football when he introduced a league for atoms (championship for very little boys). By this way, he was inclusive as everybody was given a chance to play football. Those atoms of yesteryears have metamorphosed into compounds today and giving hope and direction to society. Krobo using the hymnal was a pianist and music director precursor to Bro Joe’s legendary choir movement.
We cannot count the number of times he returned from his native Scotland on holidays with sportswear for the games room and medicines for the infirmary talk less of the confectionaries during house feasts and games competitions. To show his attachment to his former flock Brother Norbert called his flock by their names decades after they left the college. He was truly a good shepherd.
For one thing, we are happy and proud that a dormitory was named after him during his tenure at the college. St Norbert’s dormitory. He was truly saintly.
For ordinary mortals that we are, let us immortalize him by being very devoted to the ideals that govern Sacred Heart College Mankon; Excellence, Integrity and Service.