|Our last encounter - November 2013 - Waikanae|
I tried to remember exactly what year we met. It was somewhere in the late 70's. Where, I do remember - Taradale, Napier to be exact. We had just joined the parish of St Mary's in Taradale. You and your lovely Clare we members there too.
It appeared you were a dutch - kiwi having lived in New Zealand for many a year. That created a bond.
In 1982 you and Clare were blessed with the lovely Anita. A wee daughter to brighten your day. Her golden curls and freckles brightening up any room or space she entered.
Later Kelly arrived, a playmate for Anita and more fun and laughter for you and Clare as loving parents.
Tragedy and grief wasn't spared either of you as it became clear that Anita's body wasn't functioning as it should.
What a worrying time and sadness as her health deteriorated before your very eyes. My heart bled for you all.
I travelled to Nederland and took with me a video and photos of Anita and you all for your family. An important visit to be able to communicate what was happening in your lives. A double feeling for me. Being honoured with such an important task - and being saddened due to the contents of my message.
Privilege should have it that Easter, when we visited you only days prior to Anita's death. Having a warm and wonderful visit - not knowing how quickly her short life would come to an earthly end.
Colin, in all the years we have know each other, you stayed strong in your faith despite your grief. You and Clare raised a beautiful young woman called Kelly who now, is her mother's support and haven.
The news of your failing health and finally your death has hit me hard.
I mourn for you, for Clare and Kelly and all those whose lives you touched.
It has been a privilege and honour to have had you as my friend
Rest in Peace Colin. Thank you...... for being you.