Kevin will be cremated and his close family will hold a celebration of his life at home
Where do you start with a man who was so complex?
Dad was born in Gosport and was brother to Brian, Paul, Ronnie and Carol.
He joined the army where he became pen pal friends with Eileen Pryer who soon became his wife and together they had two children, his daughter, Jenny and son, Robin.
During his career in and out of the army he always had stories to tell of his amazing accomplishments, his part in the Iranian Embassy Siege (he drove SAS equipment from Hereford to London) and driving for Elton John being two of his most incredible achievements.
He was also so proud of his children and would tell anybody within earshot how proud he was of their accomplishments and achievements. Watching their graduations and award ceremonies with the size of grin which could be seen from space.
At home Kevin was not always the most honest of people, when things went wrong he had the uncanny ability to just not remember or just pretend that things didn't happen in an attempt to save himself. He wasn't a bad man by any stretch of the imagination however and he was very dearly loved by his immediate family and friends.
Before his autoimmune disease started to work its evil over every aspect of his life he was full of life, vigour and despite almost losing a finger when he dropped a car engine on his hand, losing a leg when he dropped a chainsaw down it and losing his life in 2019 to Sepsis he got stuck into everything and fought with all he had until the very end.
He loved his children and absolutely adored his two granddaughters. Whilst his illness made him tired and a little grumpy on occasions, his face when he was with his 2 princesses was a joy that could never fail to warm your very soul. He loved them with every fibre of his being and for his family he would be there in a heartbeat to do whatever he could for them.
This included driving up from the Isle of Wight to save his 20 year old daughter stranded on the M25 near Kent whilst she had been heading home from Police training college. Without hesitation or second thought, (and with some thanks going to a useless car recovery company), he picked up a new car radiator and fitted this on the side of the road, in the dark, so she could get home again. Also driving up to Gatwick when a delayed flight meant his daughter and her man (soon to become his son in law) couldn't get home on the train after a trip to Edinburgh. He had been so concerned about going to get them he completely forgot where he parked his car and they ended up walking around the multistory car parks of Gatwick for 40 minutes until it could be located!
You cannot mention Kevin without also mentioning his baking, wow, that man could bake as anyone who tasted anything could attest to. His daughter once made the mistake of saying his, legendary, steamed treacle pudding was a bit 'heavy' on one occasion, the hurt look he gave in response would have made his angels cry! His hot cross buns were beyond anything you could buy and he relished cooking for his family. When the old yellow 'do not cross' cone went against the closed kitchen door (especially at Christmas) you knew you were in for a gastronomic delight. 'Diet' was a dirty word in our household, the second you said to Kevin you were trying to behave yourself he saw it as a challenge and the kitchen would be full of delicious aromas that you were powerless to resist.
The examples of his selflessness and his heart are many in number and we want everyone to remember who he really was.
Covid 19 is a cruel cruel disease, it prevented family and friends supporting him when he needed it most in the 3 months he was in hospital. He was so unwell that nursing staff found it difficult to see the man he was, to help staff truly understand who he was his wife wrote the following to give insight into who Kevin really was which was pinned up on his notice board for all to see.
'This man who lies here fragile and angry is so much more
This man has loved his family
Has cried at his children's births
Cried at his daughter's wedding
Cried as he tried to start the heart of our beloved donkey
Cried as we dug the grave to bury him
Cried when his parents died
Went looking for our runaway cook who had got himself into debt
Lent the cook money (i don't recall its return)
Helped me nurse my mum dying of pancreatic cancer
Thought nothing of feeding and changing our babies when I was so tired
Would chat for hours to little old folk in our care home who loved him
Was kicked in the chest when I dropped the halter of our donkey whilst he was cleaning his hooves of foot rot
Fed the geese (who preferred me) and was attacked for the privilege
Rescued a pig when I told him no as we already had two (I called the pig Kevin!)
Stopped the car and rescued a woman who was being abused on the pavement by her partner
Rescued a young man who was laid in the country road at the dead of night when we had to collect our beloved son at 3 in the morning
Helped neighbours and friends alike
He is so loved and this is breaking my heart'.
There are no words that we can add to the above, that tells you all you need to know about Kevin, a much loved, and much missed, husband, dad and granddad.
We're so sorry that everything conspired against you health wise and you weren't able to enjoy your retirement doing everything you should have been doing, travelling the world on cruises, fishing, enjoying watching your granddaughters growing up and of course, canal boat holidays with mum. We're so sorry for all you and your family will miss.
It was so cruel as it wasn't your time to go, we're just so grateful that we were able to sit by your side and tell you how much you were loved and would be missed before you took your last breath.
Watch over the family and keep them safe. We hope you are somewhere warm, safe and surrounded by all the loved ones and pets you and your family lost throughout the years.
Thank you for being ours xxx