Sadly, on March 1st 2013, my father died at home, aged 80yrs.
Michael John Brady 26th January 1933 - 1st March 2013
He was a remarkable man who lived life to the full and enriched the lives of so many he met
The best way I can think of remembering him is by sharing some fond memories through what has been a shared interest between us and and an interest that became my life long passion - photography. So I would like to dedicate this post to my father with photographs of his life.
It is impossible to talk about my father without including my mother. As well as being a wonderful dad, my father was a wonderful husband and my parents were devoted to each other and I think this shows in the following pictures.
I have taken many photos of my parents but this is one of my favourites - even if it is a bit Charles and Diana!
My father was a quiet, kind, gentle man with a great sense of humour and both my parents conducted their lives with huge dignity...
and they loved dressing up! - on a holiday in USA
in fits of giggles when I took this, my favourite photo- was it something I said? ('sausages', I think.)
When I heard that he only had a few months to live, I hoped beyond hope that he would reach certain milestones before he died. He did:
- He had Christmas dinner with us - he only managed half an hour at the table and didn't eat much- but he made it.
- He reached his 80th birthday in January. (somehow, 79 sounds too young).
- He saw my brother Martin and his wife, Colette, start their own successful business in Devon and he saw me settled again in a satisfying and rewarding career.(tell you about that later).
- But most important of all - most importantly, he saw England beat France in the rugby Six Nations! He didn't quite make it to hope for an England Gram Slam but beating France was just as good!
so proud of my Dad - his Cap - he played rugby for England in his schooldays
He was also a Navy officer in his younger days and spent months at sea away from my mother. He was so devoted to her that he eventually gave up the life he loved so that they wouldn't have to spend any more time apart. In later years, apart from the inevitable hospital visits, he once proudly told me; 'Since then I've never once spent a night away from your mother'.
a handsome Navel Officer
Inseparable -a trip to USA - travelling was a major part of their
lives in their later years.
my father also took a keen interest in photography. It was seeing him with an ancient Pentax SLR when I was about 10 years old, that sparked my life long passion for photography.
autumn years of their lives.
My Dad was a quiet, gentle, kind and very intelligent man. He would be very generous too with his time. He spent time helping neighbours children with their homework and gave a lot of his time as secretary for the local British Legion.
We are having a memorial service in the village church at the end of March and we have approximately 100 friends, neighbours and family coming along,some travelling long distances. That, I think, is a testament to what people think of him. He simply, was just a wonderful man. He'll be in my heart forever.
Post Script: Best Laid Plans an' all that - again!
At the same time as we heard of my Dad's terminal heart failure, I secured a fabulous new job. I decided after a year of teaching English that at this point in my life, going abroad wasn't right for me for a while. Therefore I went back to my previous career in countryside work and found the perfect job.
Now, as a community ranger,I am living in Watford (I know it's not the most glamorous post code but not all that glisters is gold - there is nothing wrong with Watford!) and I'm loving every moment of it. I have a good salary, work with funny, friendly people, in an incredibly interesting and rewarding job - the best yet! I'm just so glad my father lived long enough to see me secure a wonderful life style.
But I haven't forgotten the cycling! I am keen as ever to keep travelling and will go and finish my cycle journey one day- when the time is right.
Working where I do in a 190 acre park with ancient woodlands, canals, rivers and abundance of wildlife, there are plenty of more places to explore and many new photographic opportunities. Watch this space!
(c)copyright March 2013. All rights reserved. all photographs and text are copyright of Deborah Anne Brady March 2013