Len Keeble (28 Sep 1926 - 27 Mar 2015)

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LenFarleigh Hospice

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Funeral Service

Location
Chelmsford Crematorium Writtle Road Chelmsford CM1 3BL
Date
1st May 2015
Time
10.30am

Dad was a true hero to us all, he lived a life of activity and always had time for everybody, he was never happier than when helping people.

Dad was born in 1926, the youngest of 8 children, and spent his formative years in Stratford, East London. These times were financially hard, but he was imbued with a sense of community and family, and that never left him. He cared deeply for people and for the world. He had an enquiring mind, that revelled in science and the universe, and often bamboozled us with facts and figures.

Dad lived through the war in both London and for a time as an evacuee in Dedham, and the sights he saw inspired him to join the Royal Navy before the cessation of hostilities. The scenes of destruction and fire that rained down upon the docks during the blitz were to lead Dad to his true vocation, that of London fire fighter, where he served with distinction and reached the rank of Station Officer. He was awarded for bravery by the Royal Humane Society, after a courageous rescue in a lift shaft of Spillers Millennium Mill in the Royal Victoria Dock, where he placed his ladder in a deep shaft, beneath an untethered lift, in order to secure the rescue of a fatally injured man. This was just one of many selfless rescues Dad was involved with, but to him it was all in a days work. He made life-long friendships in the Brigade and earned the respect of a great many more.

Following his decades with the LFB, Dad worked with Newham Council as their fire safety and prevention officer, and alongside pursued for many years his abiding passion of marathon running. He completed 33 marathons, including 9 London marathons, raising money for many good causes, but especially for Motor Neurone Disease, as a good friend was in the grip of this awful condition. Dad also completed an 80 mile ultra-marathon, and not many people can add that to their CV!

Dad was married for over 62 years to his darling Rose, whom he met one sunny afternoon at the Lido. They were married in 1953, and soon after relocated from London to leafier Hutton, and eventually settled in the home that was to see them through 5 decades in Writtle. In 1960 I (Chris) came along and in 1963 the family was completed with the arrival of a daughter Sally. Sally and I lived an idyllic childhood in the country, with Dad popping off to London on his motorbike, and dashing back to regale us with stories of blazes and rescues, plus the general high jinx and banter that was part and parcel of the Brigade. Family holidays were plentiful and always sunny, but then the sun always seemed to shine on Dad, he worshipped and luxuriated in it's rays.

In retirement Dad never really slowed down, even when his knees and ultimately his hips were replaced, he was our bionic hero and after running was curtailed he was swimming as frequently as possible. He wrote passionate letters to parliament on a wide range of social issues that concerned him, he never stopped caring. He became an inspirational Granddad to first Tasha and then to Gabby and Lauren. No three grandchildren could hold a man in higher regard, they each knew his worth and it was considerable.

Dad will be missed by us all very deeply, but we are all proud to have been a part of his life story, we all love him completely and his memory will truly live on within each of us.

Dad passed peacefully on 27th March at Farleigh Hospice after a short and brave battle.

Dad's funeral Service will take place on Friday 1st May at Chelmsford Crematorium at 10.30 am and afterwards at The Secret Garden adjacent.

We request family flowers only, and any kind donations in Len's memory be made to Farleigh Hospice, these may be made online or else sent to:

Paul J King Funeral Directors
6 Corporation Road
Chelmsford
CM1 2AR
01245 264411

With thanks and love.
Chris & Sally

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Chris Keeble wrote

Thank you to the great many family and friends who attended Dad's service last Friday, the chapel was packed with over 100 mourners, and I am sure that he would have been very moved by the tributes paid. It was a beautiful service and a worthy tribute to a truly special man.

Thank you again from Chris, Sally and Rose

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Chris Keeble donated £55 in memory of Len
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Yvonne and Ian Wilson wrote

We got to know Len, when Ian worked at LBN - they became great colleagues and friends from the early 80's. Len would come over for a cuppa and a chat and to see our many pets. We had a dog called max and four cats - rabbit - budgie - all were rescued and found us. It would amuse Len, when max would also enjoy a cuppa with a bar of chocolate - Len couldn't believe max would eat the whole bar. We have fond memories of Len and Rose with their beloved caravan - also coming down to visit us, when we moved to Kirby Cross - They both enjoyed their visits and going into Frinton to the butchers Wrights - who will miss him - as he was known there too. Our thoughts go out to Rose, Chris and Sally at this very sad time - there is just no words to express how we feel - Len rest in peace - god has found a new angel who will be in charge of the fire-department - and always looking out for people as he always did - god bless you - sleep tight -

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Chris Keeble donated £15 in memory of Len

Donation made on behalf of Yvonne and Ian West

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