Chalkwell Redcaps

Chalkwell Redcaps

Sunday, 6 July 2014

A Memorial to Tony Mellett

In memory of a Redcap..... Tony Mellett

Redcaps were overcome with grief and sadness recently when instead of the usual Facebook banter of "who's swimming where" and "jeez, that was cold today", we were horrified to open our facebook page to the following message from Club Chairman, Iain Keenan.....

Redcaps raise their arms and slowly enter the water
A moving tribute swim for Tony.
........This is the hardest and saddest news that I have ever had to communicate as Headcap. Our good friend and dedicated REDCAPS member Tony Mellett has tragically and unexpectedly passed away following a heart attack. Our thoughts, feelings and love go out to Sarah and his family at this extremely shocking and difficult time. Tony was a big character in many ways. Those that knew Tony knew him to be a warm, friendly, kind and loving man with a great sense of humour. The fact that ...he was so well known in the club to all members young and old is testament to his warm character. He loved his swimming and was a key member of the REDCAPS. His dedication won him the 2013 Redcaps Swimmer of the year trophy and he was currently in training for his second go at the Channel relay. I am still in shock with the news and can't quite believe it. We will all miss him so much but he leaves us with some amazing memories and a passion for swimming that I hope will endure in all of us. We are a club and a community and I know you will all support Sarah and her family at this time. In the coming weeks and months we will think of special ways in which we can pay our respects but please can I request that at this time we allow Sarah and her family the space to come to terms to their tragic loss. We will also support each other as I know what a huge loss this is to all of us........

The saddest Crowstone Crawl ever

Sarah's Story.....
Standing on the shoreline looking out to sea
Wishing that my husband was standing here with me
A part of me is missing now; now that he has gone
Each day for me a struggle as I try to carry on
We came together 20 years ago and married 2 years later
Almost 18 years of happiness our love could not be greater
Taken now so suddenly for me a massive loss
Making joint decisions neither one of us was boss

I look out on the ocean I feel your hand in mine
I know that you are with me; I know you’re doing fine
Onward I must travel now but I can feel you near
My grieving heart is shattered but today I feel no fear
Once you were a soldier many years ago
A protector of this land of ours, and the seeds we sow
Fighting for this country your flag the union jack
All of this a memory now, no time for looking back
Standing on the shoreline looking out to sea
I smile as I remember as you swam away from me
Family and friends will miss you; tears will now be shed
All we have are memories now stored inside our head

Every family member from the smallest to the tall
The children and their offspring here we name them all
Paul and Chris and Toni, (she was a daddy’s girl)
Tom and Sam and Sally each one a special pearl
Grandchildren made the number up adding to the fun
It really made no difference be it granddaughter or grandson
Emily, Rhiain, Isobelle, Riley, and James as well
You adored them all you see, and everyone could tell

Blue & Ace and Poppy we were due to see them soon
And there was always the new arrival due, yet another boon 
But Tony was the biggest kid high fiving with the best
Playing games and boggie swapping, along with all the rest
Further back in time we go, still more there is to tell
Parents Jim and Bridget, I bet you gave them hell
Brother Allan and twin sisters, Debbie and Tricia too
Every single one of them will miss you like I do

You were a special person touching all those that you met
A caring, considerate and loveable guy never any regret
Funny and so witty when amongst your friends
But still private when it mattered I adored you to the end
Your passion for the open water it would never wane
Every opportunity would find us here again
Sometimes I would wonder did you love it more than me
This love affair, this passion with the wonder of the sea

Standing on the shore line lost but not alone
Watching the waves rolling in, white and topped with foam
Remembering your smile that captured my own heart
Tony I may miss you but we will never really be apart.

Champion of Champions
Fellow Redcaps, Jane Bell and Lesley Cook swam in the Champion of Champions event in Memory of Tony Mellett.  H2o magazine published the longest day which you can read here followed by a moving tribute to a true champion.  Rest in Peace Tony. x.