My family’s own Goodbye, Mr Chips

“The overwhelming news for my family this week was the death of my father, aged 82. Even when you know it is coming, it winds you…..” 

So writes Quentin Letts in the Mail this week.  Apart from the moving personal anecdotes in this obituary, what caught my attention was this…

“It was as a classicist that he made a difference, helping countless 13-year-olds to scholarships. One former pupil told me he got through his first year at university on the basis of my father’s Latin and Greek. I know this may sound boastful but I am proud of him, proud of the lives he changed. He often waived boys’ fees, seeing the school as a duty, not a business.

We held a small funeral yesterday — Prayer Book, Nunc Dimittis, Sunset And Evening Star. There was also some Virgil, the passage when Iris descends and frees Dido of her burdens, warmth slipping from the body and life melting into the winds. Goodbye, dear Papa.”

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