Thank you all very much for coming today to bid a final farewell to Niki's partner and my brother Neil. Neil was a friend to everyone and that is demonstrated by the large number of you present.

Neil - A Eulogy

Neil had style, he always looked the part.
His taste was impeccable and in that respect he was my mentor.
Not only did he look sharp, he was sharp, he was very astute.
He saw many things as immediately obvious whilst the rest of us were still trying to understand the subject in question.

Although he didn't suffer fools gladly he did have tremendous patience especially with children and was ever the pedagogue. He loved to show people new things he had discovered and delighted in learning too. On the rare occasions I was able to tell him something new that he didn't already know his eyes would light up and his smile would sparkle.

As children we were very close and played many different games together, it was always fun and competitive but never contentious. We played football in Cheam Park for hours, Neil in his West Ham kit and me in my Spurs kit, three and in was the game. When we were older we played chess without a board or pieces, we simply spoke our moves in turn and memorised the piece's positions on an imaginary board.

He was the best brother I could have had, there was perfect trust between us, each knew he could always depend on the other. We had the greatest cameraderie brothers could have and for that I am eternally grateful.

Neil's smile could melt the coldest heart. It was once said of Neil that he could charm the birds off the trees with his smile. And he was also sincere, you knew he meant it. His smile brought pure joy to whoever received it. He was kind and generous with a heart of gold and really cared about those who were needy or unwell.

Neil's view was that quality mattered not quantity. If a job was worth doing it was worth doing well. He always gave complete commitment to achieving his aims and never wavered whatever adversity he faced.

Neil also had his quiet moments and was not one to use several words if one word was sufficient. Again it was quality before quantity and when he spoke his words were apposite and precise.

But above all Neil was a free spirit, he was his own man. He was very much a happy go lucky child, into everything at 100 miles an hour. He kept hold of that 'joie de vivre' even after his first illness as a teenager and threw himself into everything he did with gusto. If ever a song was written for Neil "My Way" was the one.

And Neil's way gave him a life rich with experiences as he worked his way round the globe from Amsterdam to Switzerland, Ecuador, Brunei and Africa to name a few of those places.

Neil was full of joy and had the best sense of humour ever, he brought happiness to so many people during his all too short life. (That said) He would want us all to celebrate his life which he lived to the full.

Do not stand at my grave and weep
I am not there; I do not sleep.
I am a thousand winds that blow,
I am the diamond glints on snow,
I am the sun on ripened grain,
I am the gentle autumn rain.
When you awaken in the morning's hush
I am the swift uplifting rush
Of quiet birds in circled flight.
I am the soft stars that shine at night.
Do not stand at my grave and cry,
I am not there; I did not die.

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