Thursday, 7 October 2010

Hard Times in Old England

I came back up to Scotland yesterday after a week with my father, who had been admitted to hospital with pneumonia. Unfortunately, it got the better of him early this morning, when he slipped away peacefully , 24 hours short of his 83rd birthday. My thanks go to the staff of Jupiter and Teal wards at the Great Western Hospital in Swindon, who did much to help him through his final illness.

My Dad finally went gently into the good night, but only after three decades of an encyclopedia of illnesses that he usually bore well, with only a few descents into grumpiness. He was a man of faith, and he would have breathed his last holding a little wooden cross given to him by the Vicar of Cricklade, the small Wiltshire town where he lived long and happily. We had all seen him recently, and his death will not be the cause of any self-reproach or "if onlies". He saw his grandchildren grow into happy adulthood, and was content. He avoided the living death of Alzheimer's and the dread and pain of a cancer. A life well lived as a soldier, a businessman, a volunteer, husband and father. A life well lived and well ended, we give thanks for it and share his hopes for what will come to be. I hope he was confident he could stand before his Maker without fear of rebuke.


  1. Sorry to hear your sad news, We all know that as you get older death gets nearer but when it does come it doesn't make it any easier.

  2. Thanks Brian and Diana. We hope you and Harnser are all well.

  3. My thoughts are with you today, Richard. You described your dad beautifully for us.

  4. I am very sorry for your loss, and very happy for all that your father died peacefully.


  5. I am glad that his passing was peaceful and that you were able to be with him. Good wishes to you at this time of loss.

  6. Though it's always an agony to say goodbye, if only for awhile, to one we love, your remembrance of your father's life and ways are a gift to all of us who read it.

    Thank you for what you wrote - it touches my own life more than I can express.

  7. My thoughts are with you also Richard. It is so hard to say goodbye.

    Thank you for sharing a bit about your father. He sounded like a brave and wonderful man.

    Much peace to you...


  8. Richard, I am sorry to read about you losing your dad. Take good care. NASIM