By Tupuola Terry Tavita in Apia
It’s always sad when a loved one passes on, but for someone so young and so full of life as Luana Cobcroft, 24, it is heart-wrenching.
In Samoa working on her Masters thesis, Luana, loved daughter of parents Adria and Adolf Arp and Gavin and Miti Cobcroft, was farewelled this afternoon by family and friends at the Anglican Church, Malifa.
In attendance were the Head of State, Tui Atua Tupua Tamasese Efi, and Masiofo Filifilia Tamasese and members of the cabinet.
“Like other young women her age, Luana had many dreams, some yet to be fulfilled,” her mother, Adria, fondly remembers about her youngest daughter (pictured right in the blue dress with cousin Rhoda Young).
“We love her very much and it’s so sad to see her die young.”
Heartbroken sisters Natasha Cobcroft and Nola Adria Cobcroft-Gidlow say they will never forget “our dear half”.
“We are close sisters, we laugh, we hang out and we party together. Her smile and love will always be in our hearts forever, she had so much zest for life.”
A Bachelor of Arts graduate from Victoria University, Wellington, Luana was working on completing a Masters degree before coming home to serve her country, say close friends. She majored in geography and development studies.
And thus sad as today’s occasion was, there was a hint of gala with the hearse decorated with balloons and streamers - perhaps in celebration of a young life.
Barely a fortnight back in Samoa, Luana was involved in a tragic automobile accident at Vailoa early Tuesday morning. Her extensive injuries proved fatal when she died Wednesday night at the Tupua Tamasese Memorial Hospital, Motootua.
“Perhaps she came home to die,” says one of her classmates at Robert Louis Stevenson’s School.
Alhough born in Auckland, New Zealand, Luana spent most of her life in Samoa, a country they say where the moon succumbs to the sea and the fleeting clouds engulf the village in complete darkness when a loved one passes away.
That was certainly the mood at today’s service.
From the Anglican Church, Luana was taken home to Lotopa where she will always be close to her parents and sisters.
She leaves behind a family robbed of a young daughter and a country, robbed of an educated young mind.
Why do the good die young, raged the poet Oscar Wilde. But as long as we remember, loved ones never die, interposes the satirist Groucho Marx.
Tupuola Terry Tavita is editor of Savali newspaper in Apia, Samoa. This article under the title "Happy trails, Luana" is republished by PMC with permission.