The Young Man Behind The Skerah Lenses

  • There are people in life you come across that appear so simple and play a special role in your life. Through your interactions, they indirectly remind you of just how important the simple things in life are. To laugh, to love and to appreciate our very existence.

    They don’t have that high level of education, they don’t have enough money to live comfortably, but they have a way of conveying a sense of positive feeling no level of education or amount of money can buy.

    They are there when you need them. And although they will tell you that they cannot help monetarily, they will be there in person to do those physical stuff.  But what they don’t realize is their presence alone is enough to help you mentally.  To encourage you, to motivate you, to remind you that life is not always about materiality.

    Everyone has a purpose in life.

    We will never know our true purpose the moment we enter this world.  Only the Maker knows. But it is a process of experience and discovery.   If we knew our purpose from the start, life would be predictable, we wouldn’t learn, we wouldn’t discover.

    In the words of songwriter Tony Arata, “life is better left to chance”.

    Our photographer, the person behind many of the photos we have published here on Skerah had a purpose too.

    He was just a simple straight out of high school bloke. With no experience or knowledge on taking quality pictures let alone editing and uploading on the internet.  But a willingness to learn, an opportunity to earn a living, and simply to help out family seemed to be the driving factors in turning up when needed.

    With no professional education or experience in photography, his only goal was to capture  moments the way he saw it.

    Over the 10 odd years he worked for us, the moments he captured was good enough for us and good enough for our audience. That is what mattered.

    Given his shortcomings, we were often a little hesitant for him to participate in bigger projects. But he was not one to shy away from these opportunities.  He would say in Motu “laun nega iboudiai hegaegae” meaning “I’m always available”.

    So confident he was, we took the courage to send him to Madang to cover the tourism expo at Divine Word University. The first time he had got out of the city, the first time he was on an airplane. He was only 17 then.  It was an amazing experience for him and as you can imagine, the joy and excitement of his trip were all snapped on the camera and littered his Facebook timeline.

    As an active user on social media he liked sharing jokes just like he did in person.  He was biblical and honest.

    Social media is such that our postings can reflect our character, our attitude, our inspirations. And the young man behind the lens, wasn’t one to shy away from expressing his feelings.

    Amid sheer pain and agony during his illness, he had the strength and courage to send a message through his postings.

    A week before his purpose on earth had come to a conclusion, he posted:

    Thank you Lord for your Healing.

    “You’re a survivor. You’re going to handle this. You’re going to find strength you didn’t know you had and grace to deal with what ever comes along. Pretty soon , you’ll be on the other side , and it’s just a matter of time until you will look back on this time in your life and draw strength from the knowledge that even though the road was rocky, you persevered and carried on “Pple may under rate u, talk negative towards u but NEVER take things for granted, always stay positive, its a small world after all.”

    And his final posting:

    “Thank you God for the lessons I have learned in 2017. I’m ready for the blessings in 2018. God please give a home to homeless, a job to jobless, a miracle who need it and heal who is sick in Jesus mighty name AMEN….”

    A selfless young man who had the strength to keep positive despite his predicament. He contributed so much to Skerah.

    His life was left to chance and through his 26 years on earth, we discovered a simple yet an amazing human being who showed us simplicity, love and friendship.

    That was his purpose.

    Bamahuta Dim. You’ll have endless moments to capture up there!

    Dai Hoeke (Junior)
    22 January 1991 – 7 January 2018


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