When Gavin Barnett was four years of age, Fred, his missionary father, was taken by a crocodile in the Zambezi river at Chavuma in the Northwest Province of Northern Rhodesia (now Zambia).
As the oldest of four children, he was suddenly propelled into cooperating with his remarkable mother in facing the family's formidable challenges.
Instead of returning to her native Australia where her talents could have ensured her a comfortable career, his mother chose to continue her work sustained by here steadfast faith and determination to fulfill her mission. Dorothy's sterling character and example of fortitude had a salutary effect on Gavin.
This is the story of his mother's life as seen through the author's eyes. Poignant, moving, and wry in parts, the story unfolds in the harsh and inhospitable landscape of mid-twentieth century Africa with its tribalism and a constant struggle for survival against a hostile environment, its tropical diseases, superstitious practices, dangers from wild animals, and travel hazards.
Schooled at the central African Sakeji Missionary School and Ermelo High School in South Africa, where he matriculated as Dux Scholar, Gavin Barnett embarked on a business career. He graduated and later became a Fellow and Honorary Life Member of the Institute of Chartered Secretaries and Administrators (ICSA).
Rising to the position of executive director of a listed retail organization in South Africa, Gavin held portfolios of retail operations, human resources, and manufacturing over a period of twenty-one years.
While running a consulting business which he founded at the age of 56, Gavin used his client base to research the viability in new ventures. The result was an academically recognized dissertation entitled 'Predictive Criteria for Entrepreneurial Performance.'
His leadership in professional business administration was recognized in his election to the position of International President of ICSA in 1993.