Almost a month after the untimely death of my brother-in-law from a massive heart attack at the fairly young age of 57, after visits backwards and forwards to his home and family, to coroner's and registry offices, to banks and building societies and the funeral directors we were able to finally say farewell to him yesterday.
We entered the crematorium to the strains of John Lennon's Imagine, we sang William Blake's words during Jerusalem and left to the strains of his favourites The Beautiful South. Much was expressed about his great sense of humour, his sense of fun, his unselfish helpfulness towards friends and neighbours, his love of wildlife and animals, the Peak District and North Wales, his adopting of stray cats, his love of computers, his help with many organisations by dressing up and fund raising, his ability to hoard anything and everything if he thought it would be useful. Along the way, even though injured by a fall whilst out with the Edale mountain rescue and spending many years fighting pain, he helped raise hundreds of pounds for local charities.
Friends and neighbours came to say farewell. His cousins, aunt and uncles came from York, Colchester, Bridlington and the Isle of Wight as well as from nearby Mansfield. The sun shone, tears were shed, memories were shared and there were many smiles. A good send off for a man described by quite a few of his pals on social media as 'a top bloke'.