Many people were not able to log in to the webcast during the service, for this I am sorry. It will be able to be replayed in a few days time. I shall notify here when it is available.
But for now I want to share the eulogy that Mark kindly excepted to write and read and the lovely verse from Nick.
I can’t thank you both enough for doing this, the words were perfect, the feelings much appreciated. You did so well during an emotional time.
So here we have first Marks’s eulogy followed by a poem.
Good afternoon, on behalf of Jo and Rich’s family I’d like to thank you all for joining us here today either in person or through the media stream.
When Jo approached to give this eulogy I immediately said yes no problem, but now I’m here a little nervous so please bear with me, but I’ve got my big boy pants on as Rich would say so here goes.
Rich was born 21st March 1967, Aside from his birth nothing really epic happened that day – I checked – and as I know very little of his childhood we would have to say it was fairly normal, something that cachers would refer to as “Blah blah blahsandstone”. Although for someone who loved crocs as much as he did I have to guess he was bounced on his head more than once growing up.
The first time I met Rich was on a Geocaching walk, he arrived with other friends, he had a scruffy looking jack Russell and his lunch in a plastic carrier bag. I remember he and I trading jokes and insults in between him yelling at Suzie to behave. From that moment on whenever a walk was arranged I would always ask if Rich was going… I have to say at this point well done to Jo teaching Suzie who is boss and making her more of the princess she deserves to be.
Rich and I shared a passion for speed and in particular motorbikes, sadly we never got to ride together as his bike was off the road but it soon led to him opening up about his other passion for scuba diving. This was also something I’d tried but never to the level that Rich had and we would talk for ages about similar hobbies we had or wanted to try.
In time Rich and Jo became a couple and between them, Sam and I, our adventures grew along with our close friendship.
I remember one day Rich coming to us and starting discussing climbing trees, and just like that a new obsession was born. With Rich and I being so competitive, it very soon became who’s climbing first, or “I’ve climbed higher than you”. We had many trips out with other caching friends and it got to the stage where we were setting our own tree climbing caches.
By this point, Rich had given up his long term career as a printer and had started to find other things to occupy his mind and time as climbing had started to get harder. Rich settled on learning to play the ukulele and suffer the jokes of becoming the next George Formby. He invited us regularly to the local pub to hear a group play but sadly we never managed to hear Rich play his. At this time Rich had also developed green fingers which led him and Jo to some flower shows and they would enjoy spending time in the garden planning new flower beds and painting ornaments to liven up the garden, or at least Jo would move bits whilst Rich gave the orders.
Rich and Jo got married on the 28th of September 2019 with Sam and I standing proudly by their sides as Bestmaid and Bridesman, I’ve never seen them looking so happy or radiant as they did that day. It was also my first time of meeting his mum Jan, sister Lisa and brother Craig and to be able to talk with them about the man who had firmly become the brother I never had.
Whilst Rich’s passing has left a hole in all our hearts and lives I’m personally proud and honored to have been able to call him my best friend and brother. I’m sorry Rich, I can’t join you now on this next adventure, but I know that when we meet you again there will be more trees to climb, music to listen to and camping trips to make.
In finishing I would like to read a poem and while doing so please think of Rich and the memories you have of him.
Here is the poem….
I’m saying goodbye to your body
but your spirit will be with me always.
When i see a bird chirping on a nearby branch
I will know it is you singing to me.
when a butterfly brushes gently by me so care freely
i will know it is you assuring me you are free from pain.
When the gentle fragrance of a flower catches my attention
i will know it is you reminding me
to appreciate the simple things in life.
When the sun shining through my window awakens me
i will fell the warmth of your love.
When i hear the rain pitter patter against my window
i will hear your words of wisdom,
And will remember what you taught me so well.
That without rain trees cannot grow
without rain flowers wont bloom
without lifes changes i cannot grow strong.
When i look out to the sea
i will think of your endless love for your family.
When i think of mountains, their majesty and magnificence
i will think of the the courage your showed till the end.
No matter where i am
your spirit will be beside me,
For i know no matter what
You will always be with me.
Beautiful Mark, thank you x