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Ethiopian Patriot Malaku Bayen Resting Place !!!! – by Tedla Asfaw

One may ask why now visiting Dr. Malaku Bayen after 77 years he passed away. The answer is it is never late to visit him since we never missed him in our heart whenever we think of the Yekatit 12 massacre of Ethiopians in Addis Ababa and its surroundings and the five year struggle for independence by Ethiopian patriots/Arbegnoche.

This is the 80th anniversary of the massacre and it has a special place in our heart. Young Malaku was in Harlem at that moment writing and speaking on behalf of Ethiopia and Ethiopians like the late Sylvia Pankhurst in London.

The survivors of that bloody day and five years of patriotic resistance are now very few in numbers and their story will be remembered in our time and for years to come from generation to generation.

Saturday, Feb 25, 2017 morning was a foggy day at Woodlawn Cemetery, A designated National Historic Landmark in 2011, in Bronx, NY less than 30 minutes ride on the metro north from Grand Central.

We would like to thank Dr. Abebe Girma who wrote about the life of Malaku Bayen in 2010 on Ethiopian Medical Doctors Magazine named after Dr. Hakim Werkineh and Dr. Malaku Bayen for a great piece on its first volume.

We went direct to the office to locate the resting place. After searching his name they could not get it on the computer. The staff were very patient and helpful. The story Dr. Girma Abebe wrote on Ethiomedia in 2011 which is re posted again this year was helpful in pointing the month and date of the burial. It was May 11, 1940.

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The names entry of all is written at that moment on big book by hand. The big book accurately confirms the name of Malaku Bayen and we were all happy. The “puzzle” was solved !!!

He rested on Summit B3 at the Woodlawn Cemetery. For the future visitors, you just need to grab the map and look for B3. Going from the main office to that location you need to have a car unless you want to climb a hill for good 45 minutes.

The staff and security took us for less than 10 minutes ride on bending beautiful scenery to the summit. We chose to be left alone for the reflection and prayed on the resting place before live streaming it to fellow Ethiopians for less than 20 minutes,

We can not describe what we felt seeing Malaku Bayen name inscribed with the Ethiopian cross, 1900 to 1940. We shared our feeling with some of you and hope you will read this once posted for our common journey in history.

Malaku Bayen wife Dorothy Bayen African American was buried in 1988 with him but her name is not written. We met the granddaughter in New York few years ago and possibly will meet her again on March 5 on the 80th-anniversary gathering in New York City.

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Visiting Malaku Bayen resting place is going back in time and be with young Malaku organizing fellow black Africans under ” Ethiopian World Federation Inc” and Voice of Ethiopia a mouth for Justice.Young Malaku was our Ambassador in Harlem, NY.

Malaku after graduation from Howard University as a medical doctor he went back home with his wife he met at Howard University and served his country in his profession. He did his job in Ogaden Front when Italy started its war and joined the King to Wechale Front in North of Ethiopia.

After Ethiopia was bombarded with mustard gas and handed over with the silver plate to Mussolini and King Haile Selassie was forced to exile the only one in our side was God and our Patriots/Arbegonch. Patriot Malaku Bayen and his wife Dorothy Bayen mobilized support for Ethiopia in exile.

Malaku Bayen died on May 4,1940 and was buried on May 11, 1940. Dorothy Bayen died on April 7,1988 and buried with him. They survived by Malaku Bayen Jr. and a grand daughter from Dorothy other marriage.

Malaku died before seeing his country was liberated on May 5,1941 almost a year after his death. We are not sure if Dorothy ever went back to Ethiopia to meet King Haile Selassie whom her husband Dr. Malaku was his personal physician.

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After we visited the cemetery we got an email from the staff.
Sent: Saturday, February 25, 2017 11:20 AM
Subject: Woodlwn Cemetery

” Thank you for visiting Woodlawn today. After you left we reached out to our Conservancy about adding Doctor Bayen to our list of Notables here. ”

The story of the late Malaku Bayen as a student who was welcomed by the President of the
United States, President Warren G. Harding, to receive a personal letter from Prince Teferi later King Haile Selassie with two other Ethiopian students and his unparallel contribution to the struggle for the liberation of Ethiopia, his name is now put among the Notables at Woodlawn Cemetery as of Feb, 25, 2017 in the Black History Month in USA.This is a Great Honor to Ethiopia and Ethiopians !!!!

We thank the staff for making our two-hour stay at Woodlawn Cemetery an unforgettable experience. Ethiopians are now “unofficial ” member of Woodlawn. Many in our community in the Tri State area will surely come to visit and be part of their history in the coming memorial weekend year after year.

Long Live the Spirit of Malaku Bayen and his Wife Dorothy Bayen !!! Long Live his family members !!! Long Live Ethiopia and her Patriots



  1. The Melaku Beyan is great patriot the younger generation of Ethiopians can draw immense inspiration from.

    He had organized a party of some 7,000 African Americans ready to spill their blood for our motherland during the fascist Italian invasion. It did not happen, but his loyalty and love for his people and country never waned till his very last breath.
    We owe it to him that the Ethiopian Air Force became the pride of our nation before the foreign-sponsored Tigre Woyanes dismantled it irreparably. He helped the recruitment of competent black American pilots to train our air force cadets for several years.
    By extension, the sledging Ethiopian Airlines got to where it has, due to the Ethiopian Air force which provided the requisite aviation skills for years.

  2. Thank you Ato Tedla Asfaw for bringing this amazing story of our hero to the surface. I had grown up hearing a lot about patriot Dr Melaku Beyan, but never knew the details until this time. I think I took it for granted that he was buried at Kidist Sillase, in Addis. I have been in the USA for 14 years now. I have been to Neyork two times, but never heard of this magnificent piece of history. I know we Ethiopians relatively have little appetite to visit historical places, archives and museums. But Ato Tedla and his associates proved that they are exceptional. Visiting the Cemetery would bring an extraordinary feeling of connection to the martyrs of Yekatit 12. My late elder brother, Memihir Zewude, my mother in law, the late w/ro Bizunesh Haile, were among the many relatives that survived the massacre. I mentioned these two, because they used to to tell me how merciless and brutal were the Fascist soldiers, especially the local Askaris( commonly known as “bandawoch”). The latter ones, they said, were using fire, spades, and hoes when they ran out of bullets. I was told people were herded into thatched houses and set on fire. They remembered that dry blood was seen allover present day Sidist Killo, Amist kilo, and Arat Killo areas for many days in the aftermath of the massacre.

    As a person who grew up in a society in which recording events in written or painted form, it never came to my mind to tape record them or write in full theirs or their friends’ stories. I deeply regret now.

    Thank You Ato Tilahun Tedla, thank you Dr. Abebe Girma. You are all great, great exemplary Ethiopians!!!!

  3. CORRECTION: Please read the second paragraph, first sentence as, As a person who grew up in a society in which recording events in written or painted form is not customary, it never came to my mind to tape record them or write in full theirs or their friends’ stories.

    Secondly, I really apologize for putting wrong names in the last paragraph of my comment. It should be corrected to Ato Tedla Asfaw, not Tilahun Tedla.

    Thank you Zehabesha!

  4. Please help me understand.
    In all litratures we read about his historic contributions his we know him as ” Dr Melaku Beyan ” whereas we read as “Dr Malaku Bayen”. Which one is the correct second name ????

  5. Please help me understand.
    In all litratures we read about his historic contributions we know him as ” Dr Melaku Beyan ” whereas here we read as “Dr Malaku Bayen”. Which one is the correct second name ????

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