Joseph Androcles Clitus was born in Petite Riviere de L’Artibonite, and raised in Laraque, a community of Marchand Dessalines, L’Artibonite, Haiti. He was the first child of his father Meres Clitus and mother Elimene Alexandre.
Androcles took pride in stating that his maternal grandfather Dufrene Alexandre was his first teacher and taught him how to read. He left Laraque to start elementary school in Gonaives, where he was a proud student of Mr. Lamartine Coq. He enjoyed the structure and rigor of Mr. Coq’s teachings and at an early age picked up an interest in Education there. He transferred to St. Marc for High school attending Lycee Stenio Vincent. Androcles was very fond of the time he spent in St Marc, where he met countless lifelong friends there and remained tied to the community up until his passing. After his time in St. Marc, he attended Lycee Toussaint Louverture in Port-au-Prince for the remainder of his secondary studies.
Androcles went on to pursue a degree in Education, attending Ecole Normale D’Instituteurs, in Damien, near Croix-des-Bouquets, from 1962 to 1965. He loved the boarding school setting & had very vivid memories of the time he experienced there. The classmates he made there also remained among his great friends long after leaving. According to him, his teachers were among the best that Haiti ever produced. He was assigned to his first professional teaching job in Petite Riviere de L’Artibonite in September 1965 where his legacy was improving the quality of “rural” Education. He worked there until June 1970. Former students of his speak highly of him to this day and accredit him and his generation of teachers for the quality of education they received. A few of his students became high level civil servants, one even now serving as “Ministre” in the current Haitian government. While he taught, Androcles was also attending Law school in Port-au-Prince, graduating with some of the country’s most renowned lawyers in July 1969. Though he never practiced law, family and friends would always consult his legal expertise while they were researching legal provisional matters as they pertained to Haiti.
Androcles married his wife nee Marie Esperanta Noel in July 1970 and the two migrated to the United States shortly after in August 1970. They lived an exemplary and happy married life for more than 50 years. Androcles was proud of the multitude of jobs he held in the United States, always speaking of them with his trademark broad smile and contagious laugh. His jobs included factory worker at Atlantic, a factory in Jersey City, Cab & Limo driver, a stint as a Junior Pharmacist in New York and, a relatively long career as an Educator in the Irvington Public School District, from where he retired, after more than 25 years of service.
Androcles is survived by his wife Marie Esperanta; his five children, Rubens, Nerlande, Parnell, Myrianne, and Andy; 4 grandchildren; his sisters, Theana, Christala, Germaine, and Anne; along with countless nephews, nieces, cousins and great friends.
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