31/10/1952 - 06/02/2017
On 6th February, after what had been a relatively gentle (if energy-sapping and uncomfortable) couple of years of chemotherapy, my Dad died from cancer. He was at home, he'd seen all his children within the last twelve hours, he was still himself and had been managing his discomfort with just paracetamol, and he had a quiet faith you could move mountains with. I hope I have as confident a passing. It was about as good an end (under the circumstances) as I could have wished for him, but too soon - he was only 64.
Among many other, more important, things that he taught me and did for me I have a couple of gaming related anecdotes appropriate for this blog. First, he taught me chess. Second, he and Mum are responsible for my gaming interests by pretty much teaching me to read with Arthurian and Greek legends, the Mabinogion, and Tolkien. Oh, and the Dragonriders of Pern. My first cinema experience was to see the full Star Wars trilogy with him - you get the idea. My "get well soon" present after having my tonsils and adenoids out was the red box Basic D&D starter set from the BECMI edition. I could also look forward to another expansion for Talisman each Christmas, followed by WFB4 when I was a little older.
I clearly remember him queuing with me and my younger brother (and regular gaming opponent) in about 1991/1992 in the Manchester GW store in one of their sales, for one of the few moments our pocket money would stretch to gaming materiel. He started humming Latin plainsong in a (successful) attempt to embarrass the twelve/thirteen-year-old me. I can't remember what I got now, but my brother got a couple of dwarf gyrocopters.
Another time, I'd manage to mess up meeting friends in Stockport to watch a film (before mobile phones, remember), so he and I spent a happy hour or so mooching about in the GW store waiting for the next train home while the manager raved about the new edition of Bloodbowl. I guess that makes it 1994.
Happy memories. Thanks, Dad; save a space for me up there.