Today would have been my Dad’s 60th birthday; he died 0n 4 January 1998, aged 52.
This is the last photograph taken of our family before Dad died; it was taken on Christmas Day, 1997
Jane and I sang happy birthday to him, in bed this morning before we got up. Just as I sang “Happy Birthday dead daddy …” my clock-radio switched itself off, having been on for the duration of its 59 minutes ‘sleep’ function.
“Oh, he didn’t like that,” said Jane.
“I think he would have laughed,” I replied. Dad had a wonderful, irreverent sense of humour much influenced by The Goons and Tony Hancock. Dad had a mix of love for both the arts and science. He was an engineer by training, and had a gift for rationalizing projects, finding the most efficient, cost-effective solution for a particular problem. But he also had a passion for acting, and music, being a member of about every drama organisation in Selkirk, and of the Selkirk Pipe Band (not bad for someone born in Nottingham). I learned a lot from him. I miss him.
So, happy birthday dad — I hope you’re having a party in heaven, and finally got to meet Abraham Lincoln (whose birthday it is, also, today).