Family members, friends and well wishes gathered at the Roseau Cathedral Chapel to say final farewell to Cecil Ivor Paul Clarke of Roseau who died on June 23, 2019 at the age of 97.
The main celebrant at the funeral mass was His Eminence Cardinal Kelvin Felix along with Bishop Gabriel Malzaire and several priests and Deacons.
President of Dominica, Charles Savarin and his wife were also in attendance along with former President Eluid Williams and his wife, and members of Cabinet and the opposition.
Clarke was a veteran of World War II. He was Sergeant in the Volunteer Defense Reserve Force. The reserve force was called into action in case of emergency and when ships were sighted coming into port during the war.
Cecil “Clarkie” Clarke was best known as the “man with the camera in Dominica.” He laid a foundation in photography stemming from the days of darkrooms and the development of black and white photos at Eve’s Photo which was the foundation for his son, Cecil Clarke Junior’s current photography business.
In the eulogy, his friend Nigel Lawrence describes “Clarkie” as “a charismatic man with an infectious grin.”
“He had a trademark grin that resonated among all family members and friends who came close to him – this long tight hug,” Lawrence said.
He continued, “As we celebrate the life of this maverick of a man, one whom we anticipated would have joined the ranks of living centenarians, we individually are left with memories that represented his impact while on earth. C.I.P. Clarke lived a life full until the sewer whose name is death in everlasting peace collected him as part of his harvest.”
Lawrence added, “He was distinguished for his sporting prowess and led the Dominica National Football team in Curacao…a lover of music and in his quiet moments would be strumming the strings of his well-tuned guitar which still sits in his basement.”