Owner, MD, United World Travel Services; Eminent Episcopal Lay Reader and Humanitarian
Madam Elaine Dunn, wife of the former Chief of Protocol, R.L., Ambassador Edward L. Dunn, Jr., died suddenly at 1:25 p.m. Monday, November 4, 2019 at the Aspen Medical in Sinkor following a cardiac arrest.
She was in her 72nd year.
A prominent Liberian businesswoman, active church, civic and social worker and humanitarian, Mrs. Dunn was just making final arrangements for the transfer of property in Old Congo Town Back Road, owned by the Dunns, for the erection of the first neurological hospital in West Africa. This transaction was being done at the office of Mr. E.C.B. Jones, a leading Liberian typographical engineer.
The vision for the hospital came from Edward and Elaine Dunn’s foster daughter, Mrs. Janet Zumo and her husband Dr. Lawrence Amos Zumo, a neurologist. The Zumos are determined to build in Liberia West Africa’s first neurological hospital. A neurologist is a physician skilled in the diagnosis and treatment of diseases of the nervous system.
It was in Engineer Jones’ office on the Sinkor Old Road that Elaine suffered a heart attack, following which she was rushed to the Aspen Medical where several doctors immediately began working on her but were unsuccessful in reversing the cardiac arrest.
After graduating from TES (The Collegiate School) in Bristol, England, where she completed her GCE, Elaine entered the Marlborough Gate Secretarial College in London, where she underwent secretarial training and graduated with honors. Elaine returned to Liberia in 1959 and commenced work with the Morgan, Grimes and Harmon Law Firm.
On August 22, 1970 Elaine was joined in holy matrimony with Mr. Edward L. Dunn, Jr., a young Liberian businessman. This union was blessed with three children and foster children. The children are Mrs. Eliane Johnson, wife of Mr. Emmanuel W. Johnson, II, son of the Rev. Father Emmanuel W. Johnson, Sr.; Mrs. Joselyn Pushie Dunn Watson, who lives in Johannesburg, South Africa with two children; Edward Liam Dunn and foster daughter, Mrs. Janet Zumo.
Mrs. Elaine Dunn later worked with the Bank of Liberia, which she served until the bank closed following the April 12 coup d’état in 1980. She also worked with the Habari Enterprise in Monrovia, owned by Mrs. Tete Weisel. Mrs. Dunn later served in the Justice Ministry during the brief administration of Justice Minister Winston Tubman. She also served with the National Constitution Commission (NCC), under the leadership of Dr. Amos Sawyer.
Elaine later joined Ethiopian Airlines in Monrovia, and served there until the outbreak of the Liberian civil crisis in 1990.
She was in Banjul, The Gambia when in September 1990 the Interim Government of National Unity (IGNU) was formed at a conference of Liberian political parties and other Liberians convened by Gambian President Sir Dawda Jawara, then Chairman of the Mediation Committee of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS). Elaine worked briefly with IGNU.
Elaine Fernandez Dunn was born on August 11, 1948 at the Maternity Center (known formerly as the Old Baptist Hospital) on what is now Capitol By Pass, Monrovia. Elaine was the second offspring of Mr. William B. Fernandez and his wife Mrs. Laura A. Fernandez. The first was William A. Fernandez, the third, Lauraine, the fourth, Yvette, the fifth, Gabriel and the last, Louisa Fernandez.
Mr. Fernandez in 1952 was appointed to the Liberian Diplomatic Service, serving first in Haiti as Second Secretary at the Liberian Embassy in Port au Prince. Mr. Fernandez was later transferred to the Liberian Embassy in Paris, as First Secretary. He was later appointed Liberian Ambassador, and assigned to Haiti.
It was at that time that Elaine’s parents decided to send her to school in England.
In 2003 her husband, Edward L. Dunn, Jr., affectionately called Eddie Dunn, opened the United World Travel Services, which he later turned over to her when Eddie was appointed Chief of Protocol, R.L. by President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf. Elaine ran UWTS successfully ran until her death yesterday.
She is survived by five children: Mrs. Eliane Dunn Johnson (Emmanuel), Joselyn Pushie Dunn Watson, Edward Liam Dunn, Mrs. Wilrusha Fernandez Kemokai (James) and Mrs. Janet Zumo (Lawrence); as well as three siblings: Yvette Yaidoo (Harrison), Gaby Fernandez (Alison) and Louisa Merchant. Two other siblings, Bill Fernandez and Lorraine Fernandez, predeceased her.
Funeral arrangements will be announced later.