My mother, Monakka Begum, was born on November 5th, 1933. At the very young age of 12, she was married to my father, the late Kazi Hedayet Hossain. My father was a former MP and passed away on August 18, 1975 when he was only 48 years old, leaving behind 11 children—7 sons and 4 daughters. At the time, my mother was only 42 years old. She worked very hard to raise us. During my childhood, I never saw my mother resting during the day. She used to cook and do house chores all day. She used to love treating people and made sure we were always fed during our school hours. I remember when I was in college she used to send fresh cooked food for me and my friends so that we could eat during our exam days.


My mother was a very hard-working lady, dedicating her life to her 11 children, and taking care of my grandmother (my father’s mother, Mrs. Amirunnesa). She did not look after her own health, always worrying about whether her children were fed and safe.


She loved gardening and grew a variety of flowers, fruits, and Mahogany trees, such as roses and other flowers, mango, jackfruit, guava, cinnamon, orange and many other fruit trees. I have memories of when we were young. During hot summer days, she used to cut many mangoes in a big bowl, surrounded by all her children, and we used to eat mango chantey while seated beside her. That is one of my happy memories of my mother. She also used to love eating together with all her children at a dining table.


My mother’s unconditional love for all her children is a great example for all of us and for her extended family. She was also a great leader who did much volunteer work for the community. When she passed away on Tuesday, June 12, 2012, at the age of 79, more than 15,000 people came to see her for the last time and offer their sincere condolences. My mother was a very kind-hearted person who cared for people so much and always tried to help people who needed it. She touched so many people’s hearts. She is remembered as an extraordinary lady who is a great example for all our brothers and sisters and for our community.


We miss and love you very much, Ma, with all our hearts.  We hope we could follow in your footsteps and become great leaders like you were—selfless, kind-hearted, loving, caring, and with an ability to touch so many people’s hearts.


I would like to think that Alvie and my mother, Monakka Begum, are together resting in peace in heaven. Allah knows the best, why both of them died in the same month (June), on the same day (Tuesday), and within 2 years of each other. May Allah bless our father, grandparents, and our beloved son Alvie, and grant them best Jannatul Ferdouse, and May Allah bless our mother and grant her best Jannatul Ferdouse in heaven.


We love you and miss you very much, Ma, and insha Allah I will see you and Alvie soon in heaven, with the mercy of Allah.