- Wednesday marked the 10th year of the loss of Gospel super star, Vuyo Mokoena
- His wife Tebogo took his death extremely hard and has only recently been able to talk about him without shedding tears
- Tebogo loved and appreciated her husband very much and gives thanks to God for allowing her to speak his name without tears
Tebogo Mokoena has for the past 10 years experienced a rough time. Tebogo is the wife of the late gospel maestro, Vuyo Mokoena. Today, she can finally reminisce without shedding a tear.
Singer and philanthropist, passed away 10 years ago on Wednesday. Vuyo died after succumbing a brain tumour in 2008.
With a smile on her face, Tebogo commented that she has healed.
With all the fond memories of her beloved husband, Tebogo, on the 23rd of May each year, embraces a memorial ritual that she has done over the past nine years.
“Every year I set aside an hour and I dedicate it to him. I go through the pictures and the cards that he gave me for Valentine’s Day, birthdays and anniversaries.
“It’s amazing that every year I find something new to make me remember him positively ... He was a very giving man. He was so generous that he would give money to strangers and the underprivileged,” said Tebogo.
“But people will always remember my husband for his unique voice despite some trying to imitate him without success,” she says.
Briefly.co.za learnt that Tebogo appreciated Vuyo’s domesticated ways. He would help with household chores like cooking.
“I also smell some of his clothes which still have his scent and I listen to his music all the time,” she said.
Giving her hope is a song by Vuyo, Likhona Ithemba, which is Tebogo’s favourite song.
“I sometimes listen to it when I am down or miss him and wish he has still around. It gives me hope to be strong and to carry on with life.”
Tebogo shared that her husband had many dreams, one of which was opening a church.
“My husband would have been very far in his career today,” she said, adding that he wanted to be an international star and wanted to collaborate with American gospel singer, Kirk Franklin.
“I remember when he met up with Kirk Franklin when he was once in the country and they talked about doing something together.”
Dr Sonnie Badu, the international Ghanaian-born gospel musician gave Tebogo a call last year. She was taken aback when he said he wants to make a musical tribute to Vuyo.
Vuyo had written a song, We Bless Your Name, and this is the song that Badu used to pay tribute to this wonderful man.
Tebogo has gone through a period of struggling to interact with Vuyo’s belongings or anything relating to his past life. Even though Tebogo has found healing, the process is still a difficult journey.
“I couldn’t even stand seeing him on TV and I would switch it off,” she said.
The process of healing after losing a loved one, is to take one day at a time, says Tebogo. This is key to enable one to get through the grieving process.
“For me it’s my faith in God, and after Vuyo’s passing, God took me to a particular Bible scripture Psalm 68 verse 5: ‘A father to the fatherless, a defender of windows, is God in his holy dwelling…
“God has been a shoulder to cry on and my family and friends were also supportive,” said Tebogo.
There were days that Tebogo sat in a corner and cried.
“I know what it’s like to cry until I have no more tears to cry. I also couldn’t eat or sleep because of the pain of my loss. I was in deep anguish and it hurt so much but God healed me so much.”
After all the years that have passed, Tebogo can now speak about her loving husband without crying.
“I think it was time Vuyo had to leave us because he was in a lot of pain and his brain tumour affected his left side of the body.”
In honour of Vuyo’s legacy, Tebogo launched the LOL – Live One Life – initiative under the Vuyo Mokoena Foundation which he founded.
Tebogo says the foundation aspires to the change lives for the better of those less fortunate children.
“He had a giving heart and he loved kids. He was concerned about underprivileged children because he was raised by his grandmother and he never had everything.”
Vuyo’s love for children encourage him to study teaching.
“The foundation is what will keep my husband’s legacy alive and going for a long time.”
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