Bernard was a beautiful
man. I don't think I have known anybody quite so acutely observant and
intellectually curious as he and I feel sad that we were not able to enjoy
his stimulating company these last few years. Since getting to know you
both in 1967, I have been in awe at the tranquillity and equanimity of
your extraordinarily long life partnership.
(Clive and Marion, Ojai, California)
Many other friends wrote about our relationship, which
surprised – and delighted – me, as they would have done Bernard.
. At the risk of seeming self-indulgent and boastful, I
include many of these flattering comments, to commemorate Bernard..
of the glorious impact your lives together have had on so many.
(Silas Mountsier, New Jersey)
our thoughts are with you,
and with that brave and gracious soul, Bernard, whose presence at your
80th was of such love and energy - the rare kind that settles on people
who have loved and been loved very deeply. We honour him with you.
(Lesley Fordred-Green, UCT)
the Santa Barbara days I have, somewhere, some photos of Bernard showing
our boys (aged 8 and
4!) something in a tree, or perhaps it was
the tree itself, in a nearby state park; regaling them with details as
though they professional ornithologists, or arborists, or entomologists
(or all of the above, as Bernard certainly was) with little or no watering
down for their age. They were and remained impressed. Bernard had an inexhaustible
supply of curiousity and knowledge, and simply assumed everyone else had
(John Nellis,Washington, DC)
Bernard was a very special
man. Gill and I will always remember sitting around the table in Sherborne
listening to the marvelous tales Bernard and you told. We thought you both
wonderful conversationalists, an art that we much admire.
(Mattison Mines, UCSB)
admire you both for a long, happy and exemplary relationship, and will
retain happy memories of all our visits and interactions with you both
over the years. We will miss Bernard's insatiable curiosity, sense of humour,
wide knowledge and enthusiasm for life. He must have been a great companion.
(Martin and Val West, UCT)
The strength and depth of
your long relationship has been a beautiful testimony to human goodness,
a model for all of us to emulate.
(Michael and Sylvia Horowitz, Binghamton, NY)
so lucky to be able to spend time with Bernard in September. It was a privilege
to be with the two of you and has helped me understand more about love
and to build my picture of Bernard who will always be remembered. I especially
enjoyed his anecdotes and points of information that always set the natural
and human context of every story; the colour of the flowers, the local
history, the relationships of the protagonists, the geographical contours,
..... the tapestry of the story.
(Mike Sansom, Bristol)
Bernard was a shining example
of a completely selfless human being, whose kindness exuded from him,
& I for one was very privileged to know him
(Patricia Martin, Sherborne)
the first time we met you both, when we stayed with you in TanRhoCal, and
particularly Bernard's excellent direction of our dinner. At the time Magnus
was planning to spend some time in San Diego, and Bernard carefully found
and presented him with some tourist and geographical information, which
we still have. At that time, we weren't at all certain of our future together,
and I remember thinking how strong your relationship was, and hoping (as
I still do) that we might be lucky enough to share something similar.
(Paula and Magnus Walter, London)
My father would have appreciated
your guidance and mentorship of me, I could not be where I am now without
the gentle guiding hands of Bernard and you.
(Peter and Denise Castro, Syracuse, NY)
and I have always remarked on how lucky we were to have mentors like you
and Bernard, who continually served as role models, supporters and friends,
(Miriam Chaiken, Indiana Pennsylvania)
I have such good memories
of him and the classes he taught…both of you had a lot of influence on
(Kate Emmons, California)
memories were most prominent in my mind. One was of Bernard’s always
smiling face. His bright eyes and broad wide smile always gave me a sense
of warmth and being at home. But my second memory is not directly
of him but of you and how your face would fill with love whenever you spoke
to him or spoke of him. ……… your face took on a tenderness that expressed
more than any words could. Bernard lived a full life not because he lived
a long or eventful life but because he lived one filled with love…….. you
and Bernard have taught me much about life but even more about love.
(Alfredo Varela, Tokyo)
Bernard as a humble host in your Santa Barbara home where he explained
the geological characteristics of those egg-shaped polished stones ......
I remember well-spirited Bernard in Dorset in 1997...... needless to say
that the Hindus believe in the eternity of the soul. Bernard's soul will
enjoy an eternal bliss.
(Manasendu Kundu, Calcutta)
There are tears in my eyes
as I write this which reflects in a small way the great love that I know
you and Bernard had for each other. ….. Bernard's courage to carry on with
all the illnesses he had suffered showed not only tremendous courage but
the extent of your ability to sustain him and give meaning to his life.
(Ted Scudder, Altadena, California)
such lovely memories of the times I've spent with you both. The meals we've
shared, the conversations we've had, the plays we've seen, the wine we've
drunk, the laughter and the pain. I'll miss Bernard terribly.
(Anne-Marie Shawe, London)
How fortunate you were to
have such a soul mate. How fortunate we were to have such a friend.
(Connie Thomas, Ithaca, NY)
happy memories of his elegance and wit on that occasion, (lunch at Buitenverwachting)
so that we truly forgot about the illness and the stroke and just enjoyed
the company of both of you without any shadows.
(Jo & Eric Hanley, Dhaca, Bangladesh)
It startles me to realise
that you and Bernard first got together in July 1954 when I was two and
a half……... it all seems a long time ago in fact a lifetime. . I also envy
you not a little your 50 years of love and companionship something not
many people are blessed with. What an enriching experience that must be.
What a rich and lucky man you are and have been and what a rich fellow
Bernard was thanks to you.
a miracle when two people find each other and then in one another a lifetime's
happiness. What a fabulous contrast to the usual human lot. Its inspiring
and also stimulates hope in all of us. When life appears bleak and depressing
then stories like you and Bernard lighten the load considerably.
(Donald Gill, Fish Hoek)
you and Bernard had a marriage that so many would envy and you must have
many wonderful memories to cherish. (Bernard and I never described our
relationship as a “marriage”. DB)
( My nephew, Garry Brokensha, Kloof, Natal)
But my most special memories
of him will always be those last few days and evenings we all spent in
December. I will never forget the poem he recited - like he learnt it yesterday.
His insistence for that
other glass of bubbly and right to the very end, his zest for life
and enjoyment of his little "tippler".
You are both so very lucky to have found each other - and he never
stopped telling me that whether you were
there or not, but you knew how much he appreciated the love and
dedication you showed him.
My walk ended all too quickly and I never even felt the chill. I
was just so absorbed in the smallest part of a life of a man who really
was such a gentle giant and loved by all, especially by my uncle.
(My niece, Judy Homan, Umhlanga, Natal)
think I’ve ever seen such love, caring and adoration between two people,
not forgetting the genuine concern for each other’s feelings. You two are
the most fantastic example to all couples. All your days you have truly
lived each day to the full.
(My niece, Robin Morris, Florida)
You are both special people
and it has always been a joy to be around you individually or as a couple.
I am a total believer in the essentialness of being in a spiritual relationship
with another person, and you and Bernard certainly have that, because it
has not gone but just radically changed by the absence of his physical
(Nigel Morris, Robin’s husband)
so fortunate to have visited you in October and been able to spend so much
time with you both, enjoying your company. One thing I think of again
and again is how you managed to make Bernard’s life so worthwhile, and
even when he wasn’t well you gave him good quality by your enthusiasm
and care. ( that was largely because Bernard, right up to the end, was
so responsive. DB) We were glad to have read the truly interesting
and inspiring life story written by his young great-nephew.
(My niece Deirdre, Caithness, Scotland)
I still remember first meeting
Bernard at an interval outside the Lobero Theatre, Santa Barbara.
You had both just returned from London. Bernard spoke of your time there
with such enthusiasm, such joy, that I knew him for a soul mate instantly.
Bernard was one with beauty. For that, and for his sweetness, we miss him
The picture ( attached ) is of a beautiful lily
that bloomed just when Bernard died. I wish that you could see it, for
when it blossomed, I wept.
(Claire Bachmuth, Santa Barbara, and London)
was a fine and sensitive human being, a thoughtful and engaging intellect,
and a great companion to you…..he will be waiting for us all in the “Great
Margarita Party” in the sky.
(Manuel Carlos, UCSB)
Like Bunyan’s Pilgrim, all
the trumpets will have sounded for him “on the other side”. Bernard’s life
set us a high example, as it will have done to many others.
(George Kimble, Bernard’s professor at Indiana University, now
95 years old)
of rare intelligence, sensitivity and insight
(Peter Moock, Larchmont, NY)
we felt humble and admiring
before your devotion to each other, transforming the hard times into a
celebration of things of the spirit beyond my understanding, but which
give me hope.
(Mary Dyson, France)
have showed such a consoling example of the possibility of lasting human
love….the two of you made something very valuable – and not only to yourselves.
(Jean la Fontaine, London)
Bernard has touched the lives
of many with his wit, sense of humour, generous nature, love of language,
joy in living…..I hope you will take great comfort in the 49 years
of a happy relationship, happy events, interesting travels, wonderful friends,
a blessing not given to many.
(Dora Seu, Honolulu)
was a remarkable, genuine and faithful life-long relationship such as is
given to few people, and which, I am sure, has been an inspiration and
revelation of the basic values of the human soul, to a lot of people.
(Robin Simpson, St.Francis Bay – at Durban
High School with me)
David and Bernard’s love struck
one from the moment one met –mainly because it possessed the important
matter of all – mutual respect.
(Davina Kirby, Arniston, Cape)
in my mind the image of the caring Bernard, and I remembered how I first
met the two of you (Kenya, 1972) , and how caring Bernard became
as we stayed at Siakago, and also in America, and then I shed tears. Agnes
my wife really felt it and sobbed uncontrollably as she remembered Bernard
taking a photograph of our son Mwaniki when he was a baby.
(Enos Njeru, Nairobi)
Alastair and I were so fond
of him and always felt uplifted after enjoying a delicious lunch, which
was accompanied by a fascinating conversation….you enriched each other’s
lives with your deep love and respect.
(Shirley Dark, London)
both certainly knew how to live life to the full wherever you were, and
in times of adversity
Gill Freemantle, Wiltshire)
I have vivid recollections
of a warm, genial humane spirit , a joy to be with
(Christine Hetherington, Dublin)
Bernard in Tanga, before you did! He used to fizz like champagne and he
was still fizzing the last time we met – it was a rare gift. I have many
memories from dancing the polka on the rain-soaked dance floor of Tanga
Yacht Club, to watching our divining rods taking Bernard, very firmly,
towards the old-lady-of-Scugdale’s grave on the Moors
(Daphne Ainley, Yorkshire)
Bernard’s magnificent photo
is sitting on the window ledge above my desk. He looks just like
a millionaire from the southwest. Of course he would have recoiled in horror
at the suggestion, but he looks so glamorous one could almost imagine him
making big donations to inappropriately establishment causes
(Rita Cruise O’Brien, London and Dorset)
always so good to see the joy you brought to each other, even during Bernard’s
last illness…your love was so big and generous that it spread around to
all who came in contact with you both
(Lyndie Wright, London)
it seemed to me that the last
days together were the culmination of a profound partnership….I enjoyed
the humourous comments of Bernard and the conscious “celebration” of the
last days and hours you had together.
(Therese Neuer-Miebach. Frankfurt am Main)
very sad to know that Bernard with his smile and his interest and care
for people , his love for you and his family and friends is missing from
our lives now BUT wasn’t it beautiful to have known him ? The lovely man.
…..I loved the fact that he said “Goodbye” – so like him….with all our
love and trust in the Lord that Bernard is with him, safe and happy, no
more pain, except perhaps his loss of you and his concern for you…..with
memories of joy and thanksgiving for your places in our lives.
(Georgie and Jonathan Simons, Yetminster,
It is an enormous sadness
to lose some-one of such stature. Your long relationship together was,
and is, an example to us all. You were the perfect example of Saint Paul’s
great treatise on love. I’m sure that over the years you had your moments
( we did! DB) but you were so patient , understanding, loving and accepting
of each other. Such a privilege to have that and so terrible to lose it.
(Pat Appleyard, Sherborne. One of Bernard’s sponsors when
he joined the Catholic church)
so obvious how happy you were together, and it is lovely to be with people
who are deeply happy together. And Bernard always took such special photos
for the Christmas Card.
(Jane Kemmis-Betty, Sherborne , Bernard’s
The enclosed photo captures
Bernard completely and brings back fine memories of the times Jimmy and
I had delicious and unusual meals at your home. They were often followed
by a fascinating talk, with slides, given by Bernard, and what a superb
photographer he was.
(Sheila Clark, Sherborne)
were such a gentle couple, and caring and gracious even during the trying
(Elsa, receptionist to Dr.Eedes, our oncologist)
I will remember Bernard
with great respect and affection, but above all the caring and love that
shone from your relationship.
(Janet Steen, hearing consultant)
I left Bulawayo in 1957, Bernard’s words to me were “don’t allow yourself
to go backward in life”. Very sage advice, that I adhered to.
(Graham Dickason, Cape Town)
In the Bulawayo years the
two of your were kind to me and your two flats were places of love and
happiness. I cherish the thought of the wonderful food which Bernard used
to prepare – those great curry lunches that were served so attractively.
(John Burton, New South Wales)
have been a triumphant celebration together of half-a-century together
if Bernard had lived until 17th July; but it has been a victory for you
anyway: the best part of a life-time spent in the fullest sharing and trust
that human fellowship can offer. And so you helped your beloved Bernard
to “make a good end” as well as a good life.
(Joan Gillmer, Durban North)
I can’t imagine how you must
feel after such a joyous, rich and full relationship.
(Sally Brokensha, Melbourne)
been thinking of words of solace for you, and I found this passage in a
devotional tract published by the Episcopal Diocese of Southern Ohio.
“ There is a memorial stone in Liverpool Cathedral marking the earthly
resting place of one of the greatest orthopedic surgeons, Robert Jones.
The inscription reads ‘Here lies all that could die of Robert Jones’.
Death only takes the part of us that can die…the most important part is
what animated the body and made it what it was”.
(Gifford Doxsee, Athens, Ohio)