The tributes were opened by Brian's son Chris, who delivered the
Eulogy for Brian. This is reproduced below::
I lost my father when I
was 9 years old – I lost my Dad two weeks ago.
Brian Lindsay was a man of
two lives, and sadly, too many of us here knew him during only one of those
lives. That fact will be the source of sadness, regret and even some guilt,
but we are all richer for having known him in some way. He had his pre 1979
life and his life after he and my Mother married – I knew only this life, and
it’s a few stories of these years that I’d like to share with you today.
Brian loved fishing, but
he’d be the first to say that he was a terrible angler. Many is the day that I
sat at the bank side with him, happily catching plenty of fish, with him not
even getting a bite. Of course you could never hint that he may be doing
anything wrong, but a few times I’d cast over his line and drag his hook and
bait back to the bank only to find that he was using the biggest hook in the
whole world with the smallest bait imaginable – he was going for the element
of surprise, he would tell me - the fish would pick up the bait and find this
great big hook and get a fright and hook itself. Most times of course we were
catching fish smaller than the hook he was using.
I remember when Brian and
I went away for a week’s fishing in Devon with an old friend of mine who is
here today. He so much wanted to be the father figure for these two youngsters
and keep us in control while we were away. He had this almost manic need to be
up earlier in the morning than we were – he wanted to do this fatherly thing
of “you youngsters can’t even get yourselves up in the morning”. We were
staying in this lovely cottage in Devon, and Brad and I shared the room
upstairs, and Briany Boy was in the room downstairs.
Every morning, we’d wake
up extra early, and I mean really, really early, and one of us would stick a
leg out of bed and simply stamp on the floor, and then we would hear Brian
clattering downstairs making tea, getting breakfast things ready so that he
could say he was the first one up again. We’d then roll over and go back to
sleep for a couple of hours and when we finally got up, he’d be downstairs
with his usual, “I’ve been up for hours already” routine. I told him about 10
years later what we were doing and thankfully, he saw the funny side of it.
That same holiday, Brad
and I went off at lunch time to make some sandwiches for us all, but Briany
carried on fishing. When we got back he was ever so excited because he’d
caught this big beautiful fish. He was like a kid in a sweet shop, and just
didn’t know what to do with himself. Of course, we didn’t believe him – the
one that got away and all that kind of thing, but he calls over to this other
angler further down the bank, “’Ere missus … tell these two Herberts that I
did catch a big fish” and sure enough she did confirm it. Of course we ribbed
him something rotten about having to pay her to say that. About 4 months
later, he received a photo of it in the post from the same lady, and for about
a month he was 10 feet tall because he’d caught a bigger fish than Brad and
Chris, and he could prove it.
There are so many good
stories from his more active days, and I could talk for hours, but I would
like to tell you just one other story about Brian from his not so strong days.
When our Mom passed away
in 2004, understandably, because of his stroke in 2001, Briany was very
reliant on us for so much more than he had previously been. He was such a
private and shy person, he hated the idea of being helped with things like
bathing and dressing and the like. For a long time I would go round to his
house in the evenings, and we’d have a bath, and this quickly became a
highlight event for both of us.
He was very ticklish and
hated having his feet tickled, and I swear before you all now, I never, ever
did tickle his feet – I used to wash them with my fingernails.
It used to drive him
crazy, and he’d lie in the bath with this huge grin on his face kicking his
legs and shouting “Lynne, Lynne” because he knew she was always his protector
from my tickling. Of course, I couldn’t leave it there, but would then
have to spray him in the face with the shower when washing his hair, and when
he was dried and dressed ready for bed, I’d comb his hair in the most
outrageous way possible and he’d tell me I made him look gay.
We were always close, but
I think it was during this time that we became closest.
He was a fantastic man to
know, and the part he played in my and my family’s life can never be measured.
He was a gentle man and a real gentleman.
Today, we are many
families here, but we are drawn together as one family in grief and sadness to
say goodbye to someone who was very important to us all. Lots of you would not
have seen Brian for a number of years, some would have seen him only at his
most ill, and so to finish, I want to share some of my memories with you in
this little film that I’ve made – I’ve called it
A life of smiles – remember Brian like
this, as your father, your grandfather, your brother, your uncle, your friend.
God bless you Briany Boy.
The reading from The Bible was taken from the Book of Matthew, Chapter 18,
verses 1 to 5 and verse 10. This was read by Greg Clingham:
The following are messages of condolences and support from members of the
family in South Africa, Germany and America:
Dear Chris and family
We are very sad to hear about your loss. I have known Brian since I was about 14
and always thought he was a lovely person, him and your mum. They are now
together at last and he is no longer suffering so that is a good thing. We are
thinking of you and your family and send much love.
Lots of love
Tracey, Paul, Michelle, Alistair and Ashley
* * * *
Its been a
long time, and a sad way to reconnect. Please accept our condolences from
myself and my two boys. Brian was a lovely guy from the little I got to know
him. He certainly adored your Mom. I have no doubt him and your Mom are
chatting up a storm now! Please say Hi to Karen as well for me!
Dear Chris, Greg and Karen
We were very sorry to hear about Uncle Brian. Our
sympathies go out to you all at this time, Uncle Brian will always be
remembered with love and affection. Although we live so far away there was
and is not a day that goes by that we don’t give a thought to Aunty Aileen and
Uncle Brian and all of you.
I hope that you are all keeping well?
Please send our love to everyone there. You are all in
our prayers daily.
Andred, Alison, Deryn, Matthew and Kirsten
* * *
Well I have not had
contact with you for years and years, but I wanted to share my thoughts with
you all there and say I am sorry about your loss. I Trust you are all well
and please pass on my best to your families there.
Thank you for letting me know. We were very fond of Brian and often thought
of him. We felt that he was part of your extended family. Our deepest sympathy
to you and your family.
Love to all