He possessed a wonderful character trait that I can only describe as “grit” (defined as courage, conscientiousness, resilience, persistence).
Daniel was not exceptionally talented, but his grit and determination saw him achieve in all aspects of his life. Just a few weeks before his tragic accident, he received an awarded for Academic excellence at Rivonia Primary School (a fantastic place of learning with the most incredibleteaching staff and such an inspirational school principal) and he placed in the top 5 of his Grade 6 year.
He played 1st team cricket and 1st team hockey for the school. He worked hard to represent D9 hockey at an inter-provincial tournament earlier in the year, occasionally won a breaststroke swimming race and had
recently started to play some Waterpolo with me. In fact, one of my proudest moments was the privilege of playing a hockey game with Daniel in our Old Edwardians club old men’s hockey team…. I got to play 2 games of hockey with my son.
He had laid the foundation for a prodigious final year at primary school before embarking on his high school journey as a boarder at King Edward VII in the year of 2020. Sadly, he didn’t get to complete his final year at Primary school in 2019 or experience the brotherhood of boarding at ‘School House’ at King Edwards, something I naturally took for granted would happen. My wife Kerry and I have wanted to build a legacy to pay tribute to our precious boy; something we could participate in, support, or build that would help soften this dark, heavy scar on our hearts. We wanted a cause that speaks to our heart to remember Daniel and the potential he had to offer. The Daniel Lopes Memorial Scholarship (DLMS) was set up soon after Daniel’s passing. It was started and supported by a group of very close school friends from King Edward VII School and was driven by my mate Tim White. They managed to get classmates from our 1991 matric year to donate funds towards this cause with the intention of creating a Waterpolo Scholarship to help financially strapped families.
In 2019, the funds raised were given to assist a young man in his final year at school whose family was troubled with serious financial challenges. This young man was exceptionally grateful for the financial aid and is currently giving back by assisting the Waterpolo coaches at King Edwards. As we all know, Covid took its toll on everybody in 2020/2021, and as a result this scholarship was put on hold.
During some deep discussions at our 30-year school reunion in July this year (delayed by 1 year due to Covid), it was proposed that the scholarship in tribute to Daniel be given some additional attention. Spearheaded by our Class of ’91 matriculants, funds have once again been raised in a way to give back to King Edwards through this meaningful cause. True besties… Marco with his brother and best friend Daniel.
In partnership with Jonny Gerber at the TAG foundation, we have found the perfect vehicle to help build Daniel’s legacy by cementing the establishment of the Daniel Lopes Memorial Scholarship (DLMS).
The primary purpose of this scholarship is to help in raising funds for a pupil wanting to attend or currently attending King Edwards but who find themselves in a tough financial position and are unable to afford the school / boarding fees.
The DLMS will help in providing funds for school fees and potentially boarding fees or any other costs believed appropriate by the committee managing the funds. At this stage it is not a full scholarship and until sufficient funds have been raised, only partial fees can be covered.
I would like to give some young men the opportunity to experience the brotherhood, camaraderie, and pride I experienced while boarding and being educated at one Johannesburg’s finest schools. The experience my Daniel was destined to enjoy, but never did!
We want to be part of giving back to something we know will be of extreme value to someone who just needs that opportunity. We welcome the support from all, not only our peers in the extended Red Family, but anybody else who may have experienced some type of loss/grief to help us, and our family contribute towards someone’s brighter future.
Kerry and I would like to thank you in advance for supporting this chosen cause; where the recipient may thrive not only from the great education provided at King Edward VII school, but also build a lifetime of brotherly
bonds that has proven time and time again to be the cornerstone of this great institution.
A dear friend of mine, who is no stranger to grief after losing 2 children, sent me a beautiful quote:
“Grief never ends …but it changes. It’s a passage, not a place to stay. Grief is not a sign of weakness nor a lack of faith…. it is the price of love”
In closing, Daniel was always easily identified on the cricket field by his constant encouragement to his teammates… you just needed to listen for the child calling after every ball “C’mon boys….” I ask you all – C’mon boys and girls let’s do this together!
Thanking you in advance
Antonio (AKA Trini, Tony, Guido), Kerry and Marco Lopes
All donations made to this cause qualify for a full tax deduction. 18A Tax Certificates are issued annually in February.
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Registration /Trust number: 200701449507
Current Account: 4070723624
Branch Code: 632005
Reference: D Lopes and your name
Monthly Debit Orders most welcome if this is more manageable.