Lord Rest his Soul
Jenkins Dunbar Is Dead
Published: 31 July, 2009
The late Jenkins Dunbar
MONROVIA, The death is announced of Mr. Jenkins Dunbar, former Minister of Lands, Mines and Energy during the Charles Taylor administration, and former chief geologist of LAMCO, the iron ore conglomerate that mined iron ore in Liberia's Nimba mountain range. Mr. Dunbar died suddenly at 5:30 a.m. yesterday at his home on Du Port Road in Paynesville following a massive heart attack. He was 63.
He studied Geology in the United States of America on a scholarship granted by the US Agency for International Development (USAID) and returned home in the early 1970s for his internship, which he did at LAMCO. The company then sent him to Stockholm, Sweden, where he did additional field work and advanced geological studies. Mr. Dunbar returned to Liberia and worked for many years with the Ministry of Lands, Mines and Energy. His first immediate boss was Cletus Wotorson, then the Ministry's Director of Liberian Geological Surveys, now President Pro-Tempore of the Liberian Senate. It was after Jenkins left Lands and Mines that he returned to LAMCO and worked there for many years, rising from geologist to Chief Geologist, a distinguished position. He was the first and only Liberian to hold that post, which was hitherto reserved for Swedes.
Many remember Jenkins as a great philanthropist. He would take his last dime and give it away," said Sam Ricks, Jenkins' best friend. He was also slow to anger, and maintained throughout his life a positive mental attitude," Ricks added.
Many Liberians who lived in Abidjan during the Liberian civil war, remember Mr. Dunbar as a very kind gentleman, who generously shared with Liberian refugees in that city.
In 1995 Jenkins returned to the Ministry of Lands, Mines and Energy, where he served as Minister until 2003.
Jenkins Dunbar was born on June 10, 1947 in Palala, then Central Province (now Bong County), unto the union of Mr. George Dunbar, the legendary Liberian engineer and father, and Ma Gbetee (which means in Kpelle, the work that you do here").
On the same day another child was born in Sanniquellie, to a different mother by the same father, George Dunbar. The other child, born on June 10, 1947, is Jenkin's brother Franklin Dunbar. They are known in the famous Dunbar family as the first twins," first because there are other twins in the George Dunbar family. Some of the brothers recall that the two mothers, one in Sanniquellie and the other in Palala, both breast-fed the two boys that were born on the same day.
Like most of the George Dunbar sons, the first twins", Jenkins and his brother Franklin, obtained their elementary education at the Ganta Methodist Mission in Ganta, Nimba County. George Dunbar sent most of his girls to St. Teresa's Convent in Monrovia. Jenkins later entered the Booker Washington Institute (BWI), where he graduated in 1965. BWI is where George Dunbar sent most of his sons to high school.
Shortly after Jenkins' graduation from BWI, he traveled to the United States where he did his geological training.
He was married to Armena Summerville and this union was blessed with three children, a son and two daughters. They live in Baltimore, Maryland.
Funeral arrangements will be announced later.
The Daily Observer