Final farewell for Seumanutafa Tiavolo
The life of Seumanutafa A’eau Tiavolo Seumanutafa was celebrated at the Congregational Church of Jesus in Samoa (C.C.J.S) yesterday morning.
The Head of State, His Highness Tuimaleali’ifano Vaaletoa Sualauvi II, Member of the Council of Deputies, Le Mamea Ropati Mualia, the Chief Justice, His Honour Patu Tiava’asu’e Falefatu Sapolu, families and friends and all those who knew the lovable father and grandfather gathered to pay tribute to his life and work during his final service.
Reverend Toeaina Fiti Aloalii conducted the service with assistance from Rev. Elder Utufua Naseri of the Congregational Christian Church of Samoa (C.C.C.S.).
Born on 4 May 1936, Seumanutafa passed away on Friday, 18 May 2018. He was 82.
Seumanutafa’s youngest son, Tuivaisigano Moepogai Lokeni Seumanutafa, paid tribute to a hardworking man who loved his family.
“It’s a sad time for us, we are heartbroken with the passing of our father,” he told the Samoa Observer. “Our father was a loving and humble person and as we have heard today (yesterday) during the eulogies, he is a person who is filled with love. Even his decision making shows he loves his family very.
“We miss him so much but we know he is in a better place now.”
Tuivaisigano’s elder sister, Eleitino Vinepa Seumanutafa Fa’asau, echoed her brother’s thoughts about their father.
“Dad was a humble person,” she said. “When someone wants something, whether a matai or a relative in our extended family or someone in the village, he would give it because he is full of love. When it comes to his decision making, he would wait and think very hard before he makes his decision.
“He is a very patient person not only in the village but in our own family towards his own children. He is also committed to his church that is dear to his heart and he had never missed attending church on Sundays.”
Eleitino says their family misses their father very much but they know that he is now resting in the arms of the Lord.
“Our mother passed away eight years ago and he has managed to live longer because we know some people say when the mother is gone, the father will surely go not long after but not our father, he has lived so many years with us.
“He never got married again and that tells us he was still faithful to our mother even though death had separated them. He had lived with us and we all looked after him so it’s been a blessing knowing that he had lived a happy life and we really miss him.”
Seumanutafa is the son of the late Seumanutafa Moepogai II Seumanutafa and the late Taimane Leavai Seumanutafa. He had one sister, the late Leleaga Luci Asiata Seumanutafa.
He married the late Leufisa Asiata Seumanutafa and they have five children and nine grandchildren. Seumanutafa attended Marist Brothers and went to Samoa College.
He worked at the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment (M.N.R.E.) under the Lands, Survey and Environment department. In 1957, he was a drafting cadet, in 1959, he was a draughtsman and in 1965 he was a Senior Draughtsman.
Then in 1966 to 1976 he was a Chief Survey Draughtsman. He was a Deputy Director in 1980 and became a Director in 1997 to 1999. He was a Board Member at the Public Trust and a Land Commission Member.
In his church, he was a Tiakono Toeaina. He was also the General Secretary of the congregation not only in Samoa but also overseas. He was Secretary and Treasurer of the C.C.J.S. in Apia, a member of the working committee at Vailima and the Director of Music at the C.C.J.S. in Apia.