Tributes to David Stewart


"Boss," as he was fondly referred to, loved his old school as much as his old students loved him, and never failed to keep in touch with them.  He was  keenly interested in any news of the school, and so much enjoyed browsing through our OMHSA website, which he made a great contribution towards by sending me ten-year's-worth of his  precious bound volumes of school magazines from 1954 to 1964.  In the evening of his life he had two very sad bereavements - his dear wife, Dorothy and his son, which he must have found very difficult to bear.  But his faith was always strong and he was able to come to terms with these tragic losses. 

He was my Headmaster when I was in school in 1954-55, and though I was only there for a short while, he still remembered me, as I was a day-scholar, and he once  had to fill-in for the driver for a few weeks when the driver was sick.  He loved that old Jeep, and boy - did he drive!  At breakneck speed around those sharp bends, with us day-boys hanging on for dear life.  Ah - memories!

James Sinclair (MHS 1954-55)


A Tribute by Kamal Haque

"Boss" was  full of life, optimistic, always active. I do not remember him ever falling ill. He would inquire about every student and was known to visit the sick  in the School Dispensary.  His sense of humour never left him. I shall mention below, some of these that I remember.

 His faith was very strong and he derived inspiration and strength from his noble mission, to spread the " message", do good to all, assist those who needed help. As a teacher, he felt imparting "Christian" values was just as important as motivating students to achieve high academic and moral  standards, so that they would be leaders  to their communities. He set an example for his students to follow. I think this was one of his greatest gifts to his students and all those who were associated with him.

David Stewart's contribution to MHS was immense. He developed the small school, in 1954/55, to become a large, multi-national, multi-ethnic  institution, with students from Thailand, East Pakistan, Burma, Singapore, Nepal, Sikkim, Bhutan, Finland, besides India, Australia, New Zealand, Britain, Canada, United States, Sweden and other countries. MHS was the only co-educational school in Darjeeling, which was more difficult to manage than single gender schools. "Boss" managed this very well. True, there were a few "incidents" He handled these with skill and firmness, and set a high standard for  co-educational schools in other locations. He was kind, considerate but also firm. He did not hesitate to cane offenders for "serious" offenses. He later delegated this task to his deputy who had a "strong right arm."

 “Boss" believed in the saying " All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy." He placed great emphasis on sports and culture, which was necessary to develop a " complete, all-rounder" individual. MHS had teachers for piano, violin and other musical instruments,  (I learnt to play the violin from Ms. O'Hara).  MHS was active in Choir singing, orchestra, piano recitals, debates, talent quest, plays of popular novels etc. "Boss" invited John Randell's Shakespeare Company (in which Shashi Kapoor was an actor/ member) to stay in MHS. A number of Shakespeare plays were performed at the School stage, which was witnessed by guests from Darjeeling/ other schools. "

“Boss" was very keen to promote sports and encourage students to play games. He  was an experienced  football referee and led several trekking/ hiking trips.( I was in one that went to Sikkim).  " Boss" developed these standards/ values which was followed by his able successors.

    As I mentioned earlier, " Boss" had a  sense of humour. I remember him telling students sitting on the garden fence " You birds, hop off the fence". He liked students to be clean cut and would tell some to scrape the " fungus" from their faces. He related  that some friends decided to seek "guidance" from the Holy Bible. One person closed his eyes, opened the Bible and placed the pencil on a line. It was ".......and Judas went out and hanged himself...." The friends thought that was not suitable, so they tried again. This time the pencil rested on the line that said "..........and do so likewise."

He will live for ever in my heart. God bless David Stewart.

Humayun A. Kamal ( former Bangladesh secretary and ambassador. Known as " Kamal Haque" in MHS).


By Ronen Ghose.

I will say just a few words about our BELOVED BOSS, the Rev. David Stewart who was Principal of Mount Hermon School, Darjeeling and during his tenure, I was most fortunate to have been associated with one of India’s greatest educational institutions. It was David Stewart’s infinite capacity to be a perfectionist as a Principal, combining his deeply religious Christian beliefs with his academic and intellectual insight into which he was well versed and this was adequately shown throughout the school in all aspects of education where he had to control and manage students from different cultures, countries, religions and blend all of them into one beautiful mix of vibrant boys and girls imparting superb education as the end result. We in Mount Hermon were being prepared for the outside world and the BOSS took great care to ensure that each one of us who left, would be in a position to face the trials, tribulations and challenges of life that lay ahead and for this I am greatly indebted to this great man of Jesus Christ.


David Stewart was one of the greatest CHRISTIAN MISSIONARIES TO HAVE EVER WALKED THE CORRIDORS OF MOUNT HERMON SCHOOL, DARJEELING. He left a legacy so great that it still permeates the very walls and corridors of the school to this day. David Stewart our BOSS will always be remembered with love and affection and it is evident from messages already sent by P.S. Rai, Bijay Palriwalla and so many more in the pipeline that I take this opportunity of saluting a great human being, a missionary of unrivalled proportions, on his 90th birthday on the 23 February 2013 in New Zealand. We shall all pray for his welfare and health and he must remember that there are hundreds if not thousands of Hermonites all over the world who share my sentiments.


Ronen Ghose
Mount Hermon School Darjeeling 1958/59



 Mr. David Gordon Stewart (Boss) – To Sir with Love (with apologies to E. R. Braithwaite)
By Sujit Kumar

The 'Stewart' years (1954-1963) will be remembered as a time when Mt. Hermon School (MH), Darjeeling consolidated and expanded.

I was but a child of ten when admitted (to MH) in 1958; I grew with the numerous initiatives Mr. Stewart took to make our school a better learning place. He put together a team of teachers who were not only specialists in their respective disciplines, but took us beyond our syllabi and made us what we are today.

He recognized a need to develop facilities to keep pace with the rapid progress in contemporary education in India and worked to see the creation of our swimming pool and soon thereafter, a new multipurpose building (later, Stewart Building) with classrooms, better equipped laboratories and dorms above.

He was particularly involved in drama, music and debating and encouraged student participation – a favourite highlight in the MH calendar was Talent Quest night, wherein songs, musical pieces and skits were performed with enthusiasm by students. Weekend extra-curricular activities like photography, scouts and guides developed our level of communication and taught us to work as a team. We learned to live outdoors with limited resources on camps and treks organized during summer and autumn. The total package was structured to enhance our learning experience not just for school but for life!

I was a less-than-mediocre student in school but privileged to have been taught by Mr. Stewart, albeit just for a year. I remember him as a disciplinarian, who loved a game of soccer, but left little room for nonsense and lived up to his nickname – Boss!

Sujit Kumar MHS | 1958-1965


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David Garth STEWART

STEWART, David Garth (Rev Dr). Peacefully at Carnarvon Hospital, Auckland; aged 91 years. Beloved husband of the late Dorothy May Stewart. Much loved Dad to David Ian, Sue, John Peter (deceased), and Jude, and grandfather to David, Mark, Chloe, Jack and Joshua. Much loved uncle of Roslyn Namgyal, Heather Prickett and their families. David's funeral service will be held at the Henderson Baptist Church, 321 Gt North Road, Henderson, Auckland on Tuesday 16th December at 1pm. No flowers by request. Following the service there will be a time of gathering and fellowship for all. Private family interment on Wednesday 17th December. David's family would like to acknowledge and thank the staff at Carnarvon Hospital for their loving care of David on his last journey. At rest. All communications to the Stewart Family, c/- Morrison Funeral Home, 220 Universal Drive, Henderson, Auckland 0610.

Published in The New Zealand Herald on Dec. 13, 2014



MH years with the Boss well recollected, James. I was lucky to be in MH in class 2 in 1963, his last year. But later he visited the school again and I was there. I again met him at the school's centenary celeb in 1995 and most teachers who came for the function also visited my home in Gangtok. Thereafter I was in touch with him. He backed me for principalship of the  school in 2012 when Hermonites all over the world wanted to help the school. He still cared for MH till his last breath.

Jigmi Kazi


A Tribute to David Stewart


By John R. Hudson, whom he Baptised and led him on the pathway to Jesus. This he sent to DGS for his 90th Birthday Celebration in February 2013


When my father suggested to my mother that we should go to Mount Hermon School, she was horrified. She had last heard about it in the early nineteen-fifties when its reputation was at its lowest ebb. By the time we arrived in 1960, its numbers had quadrupled and in most areas it provided a stimulating learning environment.

The number of countries, races and religions it represented made it truly an international school; running down the hill after the evening homework sessions with the path lit by the light of the moon reflected off the Himalayas, walking the seven miles down to the River Tista at the bottom of the hill and back again, seeing Shakespeareana at their peak, doing the overnight journey to get my First Class Scout's badge through a leech-infested river and seeing the first rays of dawn hitting Chomolungma after a walk to Tiger Hill are just some of my many treasured memories of this time.

Perhaps the most striking thing for someone coming from England was the prefect elections - something I had never heard of before and have never heard of since. It gave prefects a totally different relationship with the children because we had elected them to carry out their role. They were not the Principal's favourites as in so many schools.

But this is about you and most of my memories of you are of you in your academic gown, as Principal, as preacher at the Sunday morning service and as a teacher of Bible Knowledge. Everyone choose to do Bible Knowledge because it was a guaranteed pass - you had worked out a curriculum for the synoptic gospels, the specified topic for the exam, that made it interesting and also difficult to fail because you were drawn into the story.

I used to say to my students that I would only count the words in their essays if I got bored and you were one of the few preachers I have heard where I didn't count the minutes because you were always interesting.

But, along with your scientific background, you brought a passion for drama and the creative arts to the school with regular evenings in which pupils were encouraged to demonstrate their singing, dancing and speaking abilities. With so many nationalities, I saw many national dances I probably would not otherwise have seen.

You also produced a play or musical drama every year and your outbursts towards the end of the rehearsal period became legendary as you castigated everyone for not putting in enough effort. But your striving for perfection meant that the results were always stunning and I have seen few school productions since where the same attention to detail was present. Indeed, your production of the nightmare song in Gilbert and Sullivan's Iolanthe has never been surpassed in any of the professional productions I have seen or heard.

My children went to a primary school where the Deputy Head had a similar passion for drama and they were able to experience something of what I had experienced at Mount Hermon - something for which I was very grateful.

Of course, we did see you without your academic gown, most notably at the end of the year when the rest of the school had left and those of us taking the School Certificate were invited into your flat and introduced to the mysteries of canasta among other things.

When I had to return to England and go to the missionary boarding school for boys because I had chosen to do subjects which Mount Hermon could not offer, it was like stepping back into the dark ages - interestingly my sister had the opposite experience with the missionary boarding school for girls which had far superior facilities for girls than she had experienced at Mount Hermon.

However, what I think my father had seen in you when he suggested to my mother that we should go to Mount Hermon was that you shared the idea that you can trust children and that, if you do that, they will repay your trust, something which later made my daughter say to me, ‘You're not like most of my friends' fathers.’

 During my time at Mount Hermon I was exposed to all the world's faiths and had some very interesting conversations with fellow students, not least my room-mate Kamal Haque who had lived in Scotland as a young child and who commented that the difference between Muslims and Christians was that, for Muslims, their faith is a seven day faith whereas, for Christians, it is a one day faith that they leave at the church door until the next Sunday - a reflection, sadly, still born out in the experience of many of my Muslim friends today.

But, in the end, I came to two conclusions:

 • if Jesus is who says he was, then he is worth following and

 • any decision to follow him would inevitably be a matter of  faith - it could never be based on any factual or   ‘scientific’ evidence.

I decided that it was worth assuming that Jesus is who he says he is - or believing in him. My experience of being a seven day Christian has been that it is and that, throughout my life, what Jesus said gives greater insight into human behaviour and the human condition than human knowledge can. Sometimes I have been closer to him and sometimes a bit further away but I have never lost the faith to which I came while at Mount Hermon.

I made the decision to give my life to Jesus in early 1962 and you baptised me in the swimming pool at Mount Hermon on 10 June 1962.

Since my return to England we have kept in touch and I have followed both your career and the ups and downs of your growing family; though I spent less time at Mount Hermon than at most of the schools I attended, it had a profound effect on my education for which I have been immensely grateful and I have realised through discussions with other Christians and through subsequent experiences that coming to faith with such a firm grasp of the synoptic gospels and among people of so many faiths gave me a clearer understanding of what and to whom I was committing myself which has informed my seven day Christianity ever since. So, thank you, David, for making the decision to serve at Mount Hermon and for making it truly a place where we could learn ‘for life’ and not just ‘for school.’

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John Hudson’s Baptism by David Stewart
at the Fernhill swimming pool On 10th June 1962.


Joyce Wainwright on David Stewart

What a privilege to have known him - & to have stayed with him & Dorothy in 2004 & to have visited him in 2013.  Even more precious were the 3 weeks (or so) in both 1968 and 1969 when Duncan & I stayed with him & Dorothy in the Principal's house at the Bible College in Auckland when we were "collecting" our babies & adopting them!  I shall never forget sitting round the table with them when we had just brought 3 week old David from the Hospital & they were guessing his name.  They went through so many before the Boss's eyes lit up & he said "You're not calling him DAVID are you?" !!!!  So many memories and so much to give thanks for.  For David it is a happy release & if anyone deserves to hear "Well done, good & faithful servant" he does.

Joyce Wainwright
(MHS Staff 1964-73)



Sikkim Hermonites pay rich tributes to former Mt. Hermon School Principal DG Stewart

Sikkim Hermonites paid rich tributes to their former Principal Rev David Garth Stewart, who passed away peacefully in Auckland, New Zealand, on December 12, 2014.

At a condolence meeting held in Gangtok (Sikkim) on December 16, 2014, grateful Hermonites, alumni of Darjeeling’s Mt. Hermon School  (founded in 1895), said Rev. Stewart who passed away at the age of 91 was a ‘man of God’ , whose dedication and commitment to the school when he was its Principal (1953-1963) raised the standard of the school  and brought it to becoming the best boarding school in India in 1961-62.

Former Minister and senior Hermonite  NK Pradhan said Rev Stewart was not only a towering personality, a great orator, but cared for each and every individual in the school. “We are what we are because of MH (Mt. Hermon) and we are grateful to Mr. Stewart for his love, affection and care.”

Reading from the Bible (Psalm 23), Jigme N Kazi, President of Hermonite International, said Rev Stewart, like King David in the Bible, was a “man after God’s own heart”.

Kazi, who also taught in MH, said, “God sent him to MH in the 1950s when the school was floundering and by the time he left it in 1963 our school was adjudged the best boarding school in India.” He added, “If we as Hermonites have contributed anything significant to society it is because we have been touched by this mighty man of God.”

Arthur Pazo, grandson of Gangtoks Pastor, Late CT Pazo, and Ram Gopal Pradhan led the prayers in offering thanks to GOD for the exemplary Christian life of the late Rev. D. G. Stewart, while Udai P. Sharma and Sikkim Hermonite Association (SHA) Vice-President Uttam K Pradhan also spoke on the occasion.

Among those present during the condolence meeting, where a two-minute silence was also observed, were Tempo Bhutia, Raaj Kumar Bangar, Punam Agarwal, OT Bhutia and Shuva Pradhan.

SHA President Karma Bhutia attended the funeral service in Auckland on December 16.

Hill Media Network








Wendy Morrow’s Tribute to David Stewart for his 90th birthday celebration.


"What better name than " D G Stewart " to encapsulate the heritage, spirit and ethos of the wonderful Institution up in the hills - Mount Hermon School, Darjeeling, where Mr Stewart was the Principal in the 1950's.  I was very fortunate to be a part of this great Institution during his tenure as Principal.
A man of stature and a formidable figure who commanded respect from one and all,  he inculcated high moral and ethical values to his students.  Known for his great academic prowess, he was also actively involved in all aspects of the normal functioning of the school, be it sporting, drama, operettas, art exhibitions, debating, entertainment - he was part of it all.  Discipline was very much on his agenda when he took over as Principal and he was able to accomplish this to a large degree with the help of his staff, prefects and the like. 
It is well over 50 years since I studied at Mount Hermon, but I would like to share a few little mundane memories that are still vivid in my brain upto this day :-
I remember him replete in his black graduation attire conducting the prayer services at the Assembly Hall every morning while his feet would tap along to the beat of the Marches so ably performed on the piano by Miss Tegal and Mrs Murray.
It would be remiss if I did not mention about the delicious hot dogs that he would prepare with generous dashings of ketchup and mustard at our annual Sale Day held in May, at picnics in the woods nearby and last but not least at treks to Tiger Hill at crack of dawn with the hope of sightings of Mount Everest on a clear day. 
Due to normal progression and successorship, it was possible to take Mr Stewart out of Mount Hermon but I am sure it would not be possible for Mount Hermon to be taken out of Mr Stewart !!
A very Happy 90th Birthday with good health, peace and happiness always.
Wendy Ann Morrow
(student from 1952 to 1957) "
 (Standard 1 till 6)


Tribute to David Stewart by Brian Byrne


I met David and Dorothy for the first time in Siliguri where they met me after the long journey from Dhanushkodi in South India. The very first thing he did after he parked the Land Rover in the quadrangle was invite to drink from the water-fountain near the back door; I wonder if it is still there. As expected, amid their laughter, my lips froze. The water must have just come from the slopes of Kanchenjunga. Then it was upstairs to their rooms where I stayed until school started enjoying Dorothy’s wonderful cooking. 

I honour David because he set a standard in the study of the Bible I have never forgotten. He would open the scriptures at his desk and read with his notebook and reference books and Greek dictionary open and pen ready. The point was not sudden inspiration but understanding. The pattern has never left me. Thank You, Thank You David. 

Later in my contract he offered to teach me and a group of senior students how to read and write Greek. I can’t remember their names. The honour he paid the Greek text was transferred across the small class room and embedded itself in my heart. That stands out as one of the great and memorable milestones of my life.  

Now I am approaching the time when my Lord will call me home, but I am now the Principal of an on line international school called School for Disciples. We provide courses that honour our Lord’s commission to go into the world and proclaim and gospel and make disciples. But none of that would be possible if David had never been my mentor and teacher. 

Even now, if he was still was with us, I would send him an email, about an obscure Greek passage, and he would humbly unfold its meaning. At one point in our email dialogue He admitted that one Greek word had depths of meaning even, he at age ninety had still not plumbed. 

I honour you David for your faith and learning and declare without any shame that I am the teacher I am because you chose to take me under his wing so long ago. 

David I miss you.



Brian Byrne
MHS | 1957 to 1959
Primary School Teacher and Warden at Minton Dormitory
MHS | 1961 to 1965
Secondary School Teacher



Eulogy given at David Stewart's funeral by his niece Roz Namgyal.

We have come today to mourn our loss of this beloved man David Stewart. I speak today on behalf of his extended family members who live in Australia and cannot be here.  Heather, Michael, Indira and Sherina;  Sherab, Debbie, Daniel, and Marley; Danny, Ayesha and Nuri, Becky and Lochie.  John and Wendy Williamson, Graham and Annette Williamson, and Alan and Wendy Williamson and all of their families.  It is, however, lovely to have Jennie, my daughter here with us today from Fiji. 

The first thing I want to say about my Uncle David was that he was brother, father and grandfather to many more than just those of us privileged to have been born into his family. Today I speak to many of you here. I want to acknowledge how much you enriched his life – from his childhood, from the mission field, Mount Hermon School in India, the Bible College of NZ – later Laidlaw College, friends and brothers from his prison ministry, and others who have come into his life over the years. At this point I do want to make special mention of you, Darcy, and his church family here in Henderson Baptist.  You have been the community that has faithfully and lovingly stood by him through the good as well as the bad, and often exasperating times for the past 50 years.  You have been with him right to the end of his life. We want you to know how grateful we are for your love and care of Uncle especially in these later years through declining health and the loss of his beloved Dorothy and his son, John. 

Although an imposing man physically, possessing both a charismatic personality and a towering intellect, my Uncle David was to me quintessentially simple and uncomplicated at heart.  As a child I had a much loved Christopher Robin book complete with the little ink drawings by E. Shepherd. In my child's mind it was always quite clear to me that Uncle David and Pooh Bear were interchangeable. My favourite pictures were those of Pooh and Piglet holding hands and ambling along the road talking, or the one where Pooh braves the brunt of the wind for little Piglet.  In many ways I think my childish perception was remarkably correct.  David has always held out a hand to us when we have found ourselves small, weak, vulnerable and marginilised, and drawn us into his larger than usual orbit of life. He was Safe, loveable, present, kind. He was fun and funny - a good listener and always sharing what he had. He hated seeing people left out - and of course he also loved honey. The one thing I got totally wrong was the size of his brain - he was most certainly not a bear of small brain! 

Hospitality and generosity were hallmarks of his life, but I cannot talk of this without mentioning his beautiful wife Dorothy, his sisters Joy Rongong and Heather Williamson and his brothers in law - Gyanendra Rongong and David Williamson.  As children, we in the family, grew up with the expectation that people were only ever strangers for an instant.  Invariably they would become companions at the dinner table and very often guests in the home as well. These encounters always brought joy and interest - They expanded our horizons and remain one of the most treasured legacies these elders in our family leave us.  Most recently, while he was bed-ridden, I read him emails and letters from people all over the world who remember him sharing his money with them, bringing them home with him, advocating for them or simply listening to them and hearing what they were saying.  It's testimony to the man that quite often he’d forgotten he’d ever done these things..... 

Uncle was always learning- right to the end. A word he loved to use was cogitate, which means to reflect upon, think deeply about and mull over.  On his death bed he received a phone call from a nephew who talked about Asperger's syndrome.  After the call he asked Darcy and me if we knew about it and what it was.....Sick as he was, I saw him cogitating as he lay there after our little conversation. 

David was also gentle with those in pain - and for me this became most noticeable after his own brush with death in 1987 after his massive stroke. He would become so choked up it caused rather extended periods of uncomfortable silence for his listeners.  However, I also noticed that his tears never seemed to be for himself- in any form of self pity- but were evidence of the depth of his feeling of compassion for the other. Stories relating to forgiveness, compassion, restitution and healing are the ones that would stop him short.  I am no Biblical scholar, and I am quite happy to be corrected after the service, but I believe that the Hebrew word for compassion isn't just a kindly thought or attitude, but describes a visceral feeling experienced in one’s body - Not dissimilar to the protective feeling and love one feels towards an unborn child.  I believe David grew in his depth of understanding the other person’s physical, emotional and spiritual pain after his own stroke and it moved him profoundly.  His ability and willingness to stand alongside the other person in their pain and weakness is to me one of the things I have most loved and admired about him. 

David loved camping and the outdoors – but his secret passion was fishing.   Initially, as a naïve 18 year old, I joined Uncle and 8 year old John in a little dinghy, but sea sickness and uncle’s never ending resolve to catch something – anything, put paid to any joy in the ventures!  I do remember once that he was absolutely determined to catch a huge fish, and popped the appropriately sized bait on a large hook, stood up in the dinghy and cast it.  There was a squawk as a bird dived for the bait, and the next thing we knew he had caught a very large, very cranky albatross by its wing.   

David was fun loving and filled with the joy of life right to the very end. He could laugh - with that dry sense of humour sweeping us up into his bad jokes  - for almost for as long as he could talk. One morning after he'd started to have trouble swallowing, I came in and brightly asked if he'd had breakfast.  He replied somewhat dryly with a twinkle in his eye   - " I've had a spoonful of porridge, half a glass of milk, and lots of spittle." 

David was always breaking boundaries, and skating close to the wind taking risks.  This was never more evident than behind the wheel of a car.  My personal experiences include  - being in a Jeep stuck on tea bushes in Darjeeling above a hairpin bend with a chasm of 100 feet or so just under our airborne front wheels,  a cow lying on the bonnet of the jeep with its horn through the windshield, being stopped by cops in Auckland for speeding on our way to church where he was the speaker and we were already late....and so the litany continues. The family heaved a collective sigh of relief when Uncle’s driving career came to an undignified end in a final prang outside Waitakere hospital….   

However he also took on risks and challenges in other life matters and stood beside people who had to make difficult challenging decisions themselves.  Against much cautionary advice from the missionary community in India, he encouraged his sister, my mother, to embark on a marriage with a man from a different culture, years younger than her, and with the physical handicap of blindness.  For this, my own sister Heather and I – and I’m sure our families - are profoundly grateful!  

He and Dorothy took us, his two nieces into his already full home for a total period of 8 years (probably without consulting their two sons)!  And today I’d like to say to you, young David - never once were we made to feel that it wasn't our home too.  You and John are the brothers we never had – and you were the most beloved sons of David and Dorothy.  You both brought such joy to them – They were so proud of you – of your individuality and differences, of your achievements and the wonderful men you became.  It goes without saying that that same love flowed through to your families – to Sue and Jude and to David, Mark, Chloe, Jack and Joshua.  

David rose to the heart-breaking challenge of trying to support and take care of Dorothy in her long battle with Alzheimer's, and most recently he took on the challenge of dying. He did this, as he did most other things, with grace, dignity and courage and without a shred of bitterness or anger.  

While, as you know, he did have extremely comprehensive answers for many of life's questions, in later years I found Uncle to have a much deeper capacity to acknowledge the mysterious, and serendipitous.  His iconic phrase "Ah well....." Could mean either he was ending the conversation, or he'd come to a point where there were no black and white certainties, and he really had nothing more to add... This seemed to apply especially to those situations where people may have found themselves excluded, or left out.  He always hoped the best for people  - sometimes exasperatingly so - sometimes long after they had stopped having any hope for themselves.  He embodied for me verse 7 from 1 Corinthians 13 – “love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things, love never ends”. Dare I say that one of the really precious things he said to me during these last 7 weeks was that he felt that deep down he was a bit of a universalist at heart.  He could not believe that any one - any one at all - could be lost or left outside the love, grace and mercy of God. 

Uncle David - in your life you Walked the Talk. You loved The Lord your God with all your heart and mind and soul and strength, and you loved your neighbour as yourself. You did this, and we witnessed it. What a legacy!


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