Real Rugby Nuts

My Dad

Posted in Dad by therugbynut on August 19, 2006

Last two weeks, wow, what a roller coaster that I have experienced over the last two weeks. Good intentions as usual, went training on Tuesday night. It was an evening of 10 aside rugby with penalties as follows: –

Every knock on, score against you or forward pass     5 press ups

Every time ball not set properly                              3 press ups

We have the Oundle 30 year sevens and vets 10 tournament going on the weekend of 19/20th August, so plenty of practice needed. Picked three new players off Oundle as well, so they will be happy to see us!   Next split into groups of threes, around a circuit of press ups, squat thrusts, burpis (is this how you spell it), shuttle runs, tackle practice and hopping over tackle bags (don’t ask). Got through a minute at each station, but at least this was beat running down to the meadows and then all the work that we did then.  Back to 10-aside again, bit of clickiness among the first teamers again, but us Vets aren’t that worried, we know we will eventually get the ball. Came off the pitch about 9pm, two hours later, pretty knackered.  Committee meeting at 9pm! I don’t know who thought up this, but I am the Club Secretary elect (election next month) and train and the Coach is the Club President, so knackered to start with. We started as Steve, Club President, appeared to be detained in the changing rooms; he actually forgot and didn’t turn up, although he just assumed that someone had left the lights on in the club house. Oh well, just meant we finished about 10pm, instead of 11pm when Steve is there.  

Well didn’t have a great night’s sleep and was up as usual Wednesday morning at 5am, Mum called at 6am, Dad had collapsed in Hospital and she was on her way in with my sister, she would call me as soon as they got there.  The moment I thought would never come happened at 6.50am on Wednesday 9th August 2006, my sister called ‘Rich, I am really sorry to have to tell you this, but Dad is dead’, in that brief moment, my world stopped and I didn’t know what to do. I just got in my car and drove to pick up my brother-in-law and then off to the Hospital, when I saw Dad in the Chapel of Rest, it just wasn’t him and I cried like never before.   No training since then, just remembered to tape the Middlesex sevens.  One of my fondest memories of my Dad was him coming to watch me play rugby when I was at Sunningdale School. He would turn up, whenever he could get over from Singapore, in whatever weather conditions, and shout encouragement from the sidelines, normally with a couple of other parents. After the game, Dad would open up the boot of the Daimler and there would be bags of mini Mars Bars, Snickers and Marathons for us boys to eat. One of the mums used to bring soft drinks, wow we had great times then. I remember when I moved up to play club rugby at Marlow, he would come to watch me play and we would go for a beer together. Over the last couple of years, he kept berating me telling me that I was too old to play, my usual retort was that the 1st XV props were age 49 & 50, so I still had a few years to go!  Dad was 76 years old when he passed away in his sleep after a miserable last 6 years during which he had lost his leg below his knee and become dependent upon my Mother, very hard for a man, who was completely independent.

His funeral was 18th August 2006, a beautiful Humanist service, with my brother, sister and I all telling stories of my dad and people laughing out loud in the Chapel. He would have liked that bit, but he hated funerals and when we got up to speak, he thundered loudly from the sky.

Love you Dad, you were my rock, I will tell stories when I remember them here.