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Mr Bourne was at the heart of the community
A SON has paid tribute to his father who was at the heart of the community in Basingstoke.
Ernest Bourne, right, who has died at the age of 81, moved to Basingstoke in 1959, was a lollipop man, a member of the Basingstoke Air Training Corps Squadron, school governor, road safety campaigner and was involved in several charities.
His son, The Reverend Nigel Bourne, the Vicar of Chalk in Kent, said: “I think everyone should be able to think that their father is the best in the world, but in my case, I believe it to be true.
“He was incredibly gentle, humble and a great support to me. He cared deeply about people, especially for children and hated injustice.
“I am very sad he is no longer here but more than that, I feel incredibly blessed to have had him as a father.” Mr Bourne, of Vanburgh Gardens, Hatch Warren, Basingstoke, served in the Royal Air Force during national service and worked for much of his life as an education welfare officer, also known as a truancy officer.
His son, 52, said: “He was extremely good at persuading youngsters that it was in their best interests to go to school”.
One of his father’s proudest moments, he said, was persuading his hero, legendary fighter pilot and double amputee Douglas Bader, to officially open a Basingstoke Air Training Corps Squadron building in 1977.
Mr Bourne died on September 21, at St Michael’s Hospice, in Basingstoke, following a very recent diagnosis of stomach cancer. He leaves his wife Myrna, 73, his son and a 15-year-old granddaughter.
Any donations should be made to the Douglas Bader Foundation. Visit douglasbaderfoundation.com for details.
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