By Charles Mutebi
WILSON Wanyama will be laid to rest today in Busia.
But relatives, friends and others who knew Wanyama, say the tiny hole six feet into the ground where his body will be buried will not take away the inspiring story of his life.
If, anything, Wanyama’s example of overcoming the odds may come into sharper focus than ever before.
Wanyama was a member of the national basketball and swimming teams when he fell from a building and permanently damaged his spine.
From a gifted Makerere University athlete with dreams of a basketball career, Wanyama became a paralytic, bound to a wheel chair and dependent on help for the most basic things.
“Self-acceptance was the toughest hurdle,” Wanyama told The New Vision in an interview eight years ago.
“I had to learn a new life of inactivity. For some time I felt self-pity”.
But a year later, Wanyama went through what he describes as “a testimonial revolution” when he gave his life to Christ.
“God has helped me to cultivate a positive attitude” he explained. “I realised I could not change my condition but I could change the way I looked at it.”
His transformation gave him a new sense of purpose and he went on to graduate from Makerere with a bachelor’s in information technology.
He then went on to work for UEB (now UMEME) and the Ministry of Finance, where he served until his retirement four years ago.
Wanyama is survived by two children, Eleanor and Daniel and the daughter told Saturday Vision that they are not going to mourn their father because he was “a great father” who “lived a full life”.
She said, “We are going to celebrate his life. Because 40 years ago doctors told him he has one year to live when he broke his spine.”
“He always said, ‘I accept the doctors diagnosis but I reject their verdict. We are not going to mourn his life because he was a great father. He was a very God-fearing man. He was very supportive and a great encourager. He believed in excellence and always encouraged us to go for the best”.
Wanyama passed away on Wednesday, aged 65.