Famously organised by Graham, the final passage of his body through Beccles was something he would have enjoyed every minute of. We certainly did. Graham Elliot decked out in the green shirt agreed by Graham, was early preparing the bicycle hearse, the only one in the country I heard. The coffin, made out of all the odd bits of wood in Grahams shed, painted green, handles welded at Tim Hunkens, was decked out in Adells beautiful woven willow flowers.
On a spring morning, in which the rain did not rain, off we all went, up the Beccles street, traffic respectfully stopped or slowed, from Rosedale funeral to Beccles Cemetery. Paul and Black Dog friend helping to ease the bicycle load up the steep entrance.
We – MJ Jo and I – did not gate crash the family service in the small space, but returned to tend our dogs, and met the family group in the pub after. ‘I’ve retired my hands’ Graham said to one there a few weeks before he died. It was his hands on the front cover of the service sheet – a programme organised by him along with the words inside.
The Wake was in a beautiful old church hall with Graham Elliot brilliantly the MC. I’d forgotten he was born in Cromer, didn’t know of his 12 years with Remap. Approximate perfection. His mantra: a jobs worth doing well. Teaching Tim Hunken to be more precise with his electrics. 20 years Tim and Graham worked together. It was the making of the London Zoo clock that they worked telepathically together, no need to even speak they were so in tune. Tim still services the clock. All mentioned his kindness. Never an unkind word for anyone. His playfulness. Enjoyment of dynamite. Meg and others read out poems chosen by Graham.
He inspired us all, in his life and in his death. We all learn from his dying.
Michael Leuning: Let us live in such a way / That when we die / Our love will survive / And continue to grow.