Randall Butisingh – Dec 1, 1912 to Dec 9, 2012 – was the “World’s Oldest Blogger”
Now the worlds’ oldest BLOGGER at 97years”
Randall Butisingh was born in British Guiana (now Guyana), on December 1, 1912. He grew up in Buxton, East Coast Demerara, where he received his primary education. In 1925, he qualified and was the first runner-up for the first Buxton Scholarship. In 1927, he passed the School Leaving Examination and became a Pupil Teacher at the age of 15. This was the start of a 45 year-long career, with a few short breaks, in which he served as a Class II Certified and Trained Teacher until his retirement in January,1972. During his career, he taught mainly in Buxton, with short assignments in Lusignan, Nonpariel, Ann’s Grove and Mon Repos. According to him his best teaching experience was with head teacher Frank H.V. Russell who was supportive of his suggestions to put more importance in activities such as arts and crafts, gardening, and physical education as the majority of the children only attended primary school. He was able to organize exhibitions in these areas at school fairs and the annual May festivals.
Around 1930, he became a member of the Buxton Literary Institute where he read papers, participated in discussions and debates, and served as a delegate to the Plaisance Literary Institute.
In 1940, he was appointed Lay Reader of St. Augustine’s Church by Canon William Granville Burgan, where he served for 18 years performing such functions as reading the lessons, preaching at evensong, burying the dead and holding cottage meetings. He was also treasurer for the Church.
In 1958, he was appointed Senior Assistant of the Lusignan Government School, under Head Master George Bryan, where later, he became the acting Head-Teacher during the 1962 disturbances. At Lusignan, he served as Chairman for the Adult Education and Study Groups, Chairman of the Community Centre and part time Welfare Officer, during which time youths from Buxton met for sports and rallies at the Community Centre. At Lusignan School, he regularly organized fairs, concerts and parent-teacher meetings. Also working with the staff, he helped to write a textbook for the middle division, and to do a school magazine.
His literary accomplishments include:
* Three books of poems entitled Loves Light, Wild Flowers and Loves Balm which was his whole collection.
* A book of Thoughts entitled “Flashes of Light”
* A series of articles and letters to the press dealing with topics on education, morality and other issues.
* A paper on “Hindi in Multicultural Guyana.”
* A thesis on ‘The role of the School in the Estate Community.”\
* A translation of a biography of Mahatma Gandhi – from Hindi to English.
* An article in Hindi, jointly written with J.S. Roopchand and published in “Gagan Anchal” a prestigious Indian magazine.
A Paper on “Annandale Today”.
A Paper on Humanity read to youths of the Vir Dal, an organisation within the Arya Samaj.
He was awarded a Poet of Merit Certificate by the American Poetry Association.IN 1976, He became a member of the Guyana Hindi Prachar Sabha, an organisation which sought to propagate Hindi in Guyana. He was the organization’s Hindi correspondent and editor of its Journal, “GYANDA.”
Now in the evening of his years, his thirst for knowledge and service has not diminished. Among the areas of his interest are; Comparative Religion, Eastern Philosophy, the Computer, and teaching Hindi. In his late 70’s he learnt to read the Arabic script and is able to read from the Holy Quran. He can also recite a few of the Suras from memory. He can also read Urdu, a sister language of Hindi, written in the Persian script to a fair extent. At age 89, he began learning to play the Recorder and according to him has acquired some degree of proficiency. He also practices on the keyboard. In this, his 96th year, he is studying Spanish and art.
He has documented his life story in ‘My Story’ , which is now on his blog. It recounts interesting aspects of his life dating back to 1914, the beginning of World War I.
He does his own typing and keeps studying and selecting, commenting and writing articles and poetry for the Blog and other publications. His Blog now has almost 700 entries on a whole range of subjects and has hundreds of visitors daily. For his Weblog and being the world’s oldest blogger he recently received the “Graypow Award”. Added to his surfing of the web and corresponding with friends, he is now a member of FACEBOOK, most likely its oldest member, where he communicates with his closest friends who are members.
Mr Butisingh would liketo thank Mr. Cyril Bryan, Economist and Management Consultant, for initiating the idea for this Blog on October 21, 2007, with some of the poems sent to him by Mr. Butisingh. Mr. Bryan, along with Mr. Butisingh’s grand-daughter Vanessa, tutored Mr. Butisingh in operating and maintaining the Blog and today he is able to add and correct entries himself.
He said in one of his writings:
”Gold and silver have I none but such as I have, give I unto thee. If my messages can touch only one heart, I know I have not lived in vain”.
Feel free to contact Mr. Butisingh at: email@example.com