In behalf of the organizing committee, it is my pleasure to say thank you for coming from all around the world to celebrate our 4th Keren High Schools Reunion. First, allow me to introduce the organizing committee who made this possible. They are Abraha Zerai, Bahlibi Tekle, Hassen Fereg, Tesfagabir Misgina, Yacob Idris, Zeinab Warah, Michael Embaye, Woldeslassie Tesfai, Dr. Wolderamriam Gebreslassie, Kibra Gebre, Yassin Ibrahim, Dr. Fickak Habtes, Habtinkiel Woldesus, Yemane Desta, Yohannes Ferdinado, Mohamed Ali, Hassen Mender, and Dr. Ogbai Tekie. In the last 2 years, through teleconferences, we met at least once a month to prepare this get together. We put a lot of work into it.
We are all gathered here today in the name of Keren High Schools Reunion, which covers from the day it was founded to today’s Keren High Schools. Before I speak about our beloved High Schools, allow me to talk about Keren in general. In our first reunion, Hassen Fereg described it as, and I quote, “Keren is a cosmopolitan town with all the Eritrean ethnic groups and religious traditions living side by side. It is a town were more than eight other nationalities have assimilated into. It is a town where a Muslim lives beside a Christian in harmony and understanding.” In our 2 reunion Fickak had the 10 points that make you wedi Keren. One of them was the way we spoke Tigringa. He said, “ … .“ With that allow me to tell a joke told to me by Hassen. Growing up in Gezaband we had a funny person. One day after coming back from Forto, he said, “… .“ He was right for us Keren was the biggest and the best city in the world entertaining diversity, tolerance, unity and harmony.
So far we had 3 reunions. In our first reunion in Toronto, we had a wonder reunion attended by many. Among our guests were Mr. and Mrs. Rajan and Mr. Rogers who shared with us historic photographs and their Keren High School memories. Our second reunion was even bigger and we had a great time together in DC. Our 3rd reunion was also in DC which was the best. We were fortunate to have Mr. Kanoni, Joan, and Mr. and Mrs. Ragan, and Mr. and Mrs. Hugh among us. What a beautiful day it was. This is our first reunion in the west coast. I am hoping each one of us will enjoy every second of it.
What is the goal of the reunion? As stated in our website, “Sweetkeren.net”, our mission and vision says that the Keren Secondary School re-union mission is to strive in bringing together old friends. We envision that we would create, develop and encourage within all Keren High School attendees a legacy of relationship and belonging. Our statement clearly defines that our reunion is not organized by any political, religious or ethnic organization. It does not engage in any ideological and political discourse.
We don’t serve any organization. We are not here to promote, propel, or propagate any political agenda. We don’t have any political motive. Our organization is free of all political, religious, or regional tendencies. We are looking for sheer brotherhood, sisterhood, and love of one another that would bond us together and cherish the days we had to go to school. In short, our mission is to get together, talk about the old good days, laugh about our childhood and tell Keren style “Jokes, Hickayas and Wonesas”.
For the future of the reunion, I would like to challenge the young generations who attended Keren High Schools, in the 80th, 90th, and 2000s to step up to plate and play important roles. We would like to pass the baton for individuals who would continue these holy reunions.
Before I finish, I would like to thank all our speakers who volunteered to share their wisdom with us. I wish them good health, success and happiness in life.
I wish success to this reunion as success will get us an everlasting happiness, and rich memories. Enjoy yourselves, and have a great Keren high School Reunion!!!