A personal tribute to Comrade Godfrey Cremer
The following tribute was delivered by Comrade Joti Brar to the memorial meeting for Godfrey Cremer held on 12 May 2012.
Words I would say to Godfrey if he was still here
I would say thank you for being such a rock in my life. For showing that it is possible to be true to your principles in small as well as big ways.
For offering such a shining example of a life well lived. For showing such warmth, generosity and loyalty in your relationships with friends, family and comrades. For demonstrating such selflessness and humility despite your obvious talents in so many spheres. For setting such a shining example of persistence and of devotion to everything that is most important in this world.
Thank you for magic tricks and shoulder rides. For infant school pick-ups and trips to the zoo. For study classes, spare beds and safe havens. For eternal patience and good humour. For taking me completely into your heart and your family. For giving me the best sister anyone could ask for. For coming to the hospital when our Josef was born, for putting away the cot we couldn’t bear to see, and for remembering our littlest comrade at the last.
I haven’t words to express what your presence has meant in my life. A visit to your house was always an adventure. Just the knowledge that you and Iris were in my world gave so much childhood reassurance.
It was in your home and under your gentle guidance that I took my first steps into the movement. Where I read Lenin and Stalin and learned to take a scientific view of the world. In your home I attended political meetings and took part in my first practical activities. In your home I learned that it was possible to overcome all barriers to political commitment. In your home I learned that no detail is too small to pay attention to in the service of the working class.
In your home I felt loved and secure and free to develop. You and Iris had the knack of treating everyone as special and it made your home the most welcoming I have ever known.
What else would I say?
Only that I hope to do better in following your example. Only that I will not forget the promise I made to you in the hospital: we will finish what you and your comrades have started.
We will build the party that you worked so hard to bring into existence. We will turn it into a real fighting force for revolution. We will do everything we can to bring about the society that you longed for so ardently all your life.
And finally, paraphrasing Bobby Sands, I would say that our final tribute to your inspiring example will be the laughter of our children’s children’s children.
We miss you Godfrey. We wish you hadn’t left us so soon. But we are so glad we had you and we are determined that you will live on in us. We are determined to make you proud.
With love, with respect, and with the reddest of red salutes, I would say what you said to me when we talked about your prognosis: no regrets.
Tribute to Comrade Godfrey in Lalkar
Photos from the memorial meeting
Photos from Godfrey’s funeral
Video: funeral oration by Harpal Brar
Video: Godfrey recites his poem ‘Uddam Singh and Bhagat Singh’
Video: Godfrey speaks on Darwin, Marx and Materialism