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Nigerian student found dead in US parking lot

Nigerian born Olawale Oladimeji Oladipo was a kind hearted and vivacious 25 year-old student of the University of Missouri in Kansas City, majoring in Economics.

He had only two more semesters to graduate with a bachelor’s degree in Economics. Friends and relatives said that he was a faithful born again Christian, who followed the teachings of the Bible with a passion.

He was already engaged in Nigeria to his family approved sweetheart, and had planned to marry her right after graduation on his return to the motherland. But fate would frustrate a well coordinated projection of events. (Photo: the late Olawale Oladimeji Oladipo)

On that fateful early Tuesday morning, between midnight and 3.30 am, workers at McDonald fast food restaurant discovered the body of a man found dead in the parking lot.

The corpse was later identified by police to be the body of Oladipo. Police have not yet revealed how he was killed, but they are investigating the occurrence as homicide. According to the family, he left home a few blocks away.

But they don’t know how he ended up at the destination where he was found dead. He was employed as Correction Officer in Jackson County. His goal was to save enough money and return to Nigeria in December, where his fiancée was waiting for him to get married. The police are appealing for information and anyone who has any should call the TIPS hotline.

His family has opened a memorial fund in his honor: After he was killed about a fortnight ago in Grandview, Missouri, his remains were interred at the Dwayne Harvey funeral home cemetery in Grandview.

His tragic death brought together the perceived polarized Nigerian community, pouring out their hearts during the funeral service and prayer session held on his behalf. There were 25 eulogies, each one representing each year of his life as fitting commemoration of the rising star. His life was prematurely ruined by an unknown gunman or gunmen.

The editor of Oladimeji Abitogun spoke emotionally of the deceased short-lived life that was well spent.

One of his professors at the University of Missouri described him as extremely cultured and respectful. Even though he was in the US, he followed and extended the courtesy of the typical Yoruba culture by prostrating to greet his elders, regardless of the occasion and the diversity of people present.

He was a passionate sportsman and ardent football lover. His favorite scripture displayed on a plaque on his wall was: ‘For God so loved the world that he gave His only begotten son.”

Kansas police are meticulously trying to piece together whether the death was a gang related mafia or one masterminded by recalcitrant prisoners at the prison correctional facility where he was employed: responsible for Oladipo’s mysterious death.

But there are more questions than answers at this point in the progress of the investigations.

The deceased is survived by a colony of grieving and destabilized extended family and a host of friends.

Roland Bankole Marke © 2010