Goodbye Nick

My plan to post a monthly blog didn’t get off to a very good start, but here’s a roundup of recent events.

Nick and Kieran went on a boys’ road trip to England, paying Alex a surprise birthday visit and collecting an old motorbike that’s been in boxes in my brother’s garage for many years; the idea is that Kieran will rebuild it.

Two weeks later Alex, Graham and the girls came over for the Easter holidays and of course Kieran, Alice and their children joined us. We had no idea that Gemma and Chris, her partner, had planned to fly in to surprise us. We certainly were amazed when they appeared at the kitchen window. We only had a few days all together, but what a few days, full of love and laughter, before people had to go their separate ways. It was made all the more special after two and a half years of COVID restrictions.

This time became all the more poignant on Saturday 30th April, when I came home from a day out to find Nick dead on the floor. He’d had a heart attack.

We’re all devastated, he was always so full of life and love, of plans for us and for Kieran’s house. He was my rock and I can’t imagine living without him. 

I’m so pleased he and Kieran had done their trip to England together, that we’d all been together for Easter and that Nick had met Chris for the first time and wholeheartedly approved of Gemma’s choice of partner.

The day of his funeral was the hardest day of my life, but it went smoothly and was attended by over a hundred and fifty people, many of the cyclists in lycra at my request; the salle des fetes was full. I couldn’t be prouder of my children, who arrived as soon as was possible, who have supported me in every possible way and who together wrote tributes to their dad, which the girls read during the ceremony and somehow kept their composure. 

The house has been bursting at the seams with up to 13 people, family and friends, staying. Obviously we’ve shed a lot of tears, but there have also been moments of laughter, when I could almost imagine that Nick was still here with us.

Our hearts are breaking, but his legacy is one of a united, strong, loving family who will continue to pass on his values to the next generation.