Tributes have been pouring in for a much-loved and dedicated teacher who passed away last Friday night of a suspected heart attack. Taupau Nanai Lafai Lifu Ofisa Tavana has died at age 67, remembered by his loved ones and students as, a wonderful teacher with great sense of humour.
Known to all as Mr Tavana, Taupau taught at Wesley College in Faleula for more than 20 years. Mr Tavana taught both mathematics and Samoan, and known best for his mastery of the Samoan language and literature.
Mr Tavana carried multiple chiefly titles, serving as a pillar within his family, the community and his beloved Methodist Church.
Mr Tavana was a maths teacher to Laaulialemalietoa Leuatea Polataivao Schmidt during the Minister’s St Joseph College days. Laauli shared this 2021 post stating his appreciation to Mr Tavana who had been instrumental in organizing a pre-election road show event.
A student from Wesley College said the school were shocked by the news because Mr Tavana had attended school on Friday last week, and was his usual happy self.
“He didn’t seem sick at all, and then suddenly we heard the next day he had passed..”
“Sa matou vaaia lava i le aoga o malosi e leai ma se foliga ma’i, ae te’i ua toe faalogo atu i le aso e sosoo ai ua maliu..”
“Mr Taupau Tavana is well known at our school for his knowledge and of Samoan history and legends.. we loved hearing him tell stories in class”.
Mr Tavana is being remembered by students through tributes on social as a hardworking, faithful soldier.
“He’s helped shape us into who we are and we couldn’t have passed our exams without him,” states one tribute.
Rest in peace Mr Taupau Tavana. Thank you for yoir service to Samoa.