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Death of sea cadets chairman

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ROD HOWES: above all a devoted family man
ROD HOWES: above all a devoted family man

PEOPLE in many parts of Kent are mourning the death of Rod Howes, chairman of the sea cadets at Herne Bay, and a tireless charity worker. He was 62.

Mr Howes collapsed at home and was pronounced dead shortly afterwards.

He was husband to Penny for 35 years, father to Gillian and Allison, father-in-law to David and Peter and grandfather to Joshua, Jessica, Rebekah and Kimberly.

His daughter Allison Hopper said: “Dad will be remembered for his charity work, for his work with the Sea Cadets and his love for the RNLI but above all of this he was a dedicated family man.

“He was very family orientated and his wife, children and grandchildren were always number one on his list of priorities.”

Mr Howes, of Bennells Ave, Tankerton, was a firefighter in London from 1965, rising to the rank of assistant divisional officer at Clerkenwell before his retirement.

He went on to join the Kent Ambulance Trust, working for the Patient Transfer Service as well as projects in the voluntary sector.

Mr Howes was a member of the Retired Firefighters' Association as well as a Freemason for more than 10 years, during which time he held the chairs of two lodges. He was also a lifelong lifeboat enthusiast and took on the post of RNLI Governor.

He was well known for his work with the award-winning Herne Bay Sea Cadets, based at Hampton Pier, of whom he soon became chairman as well as later becoming chairman of the East Kent District.

Herne Bay Sea Cadets’ Officer in Charge, Paul Fenn, said: “This is a terrible shock to all and the unit’s thoughts are with Penny and the family at this tragic time,

“Rod and myself hit it off right from the start so not only has the unit lost an excellent chairman but I have lost a dear friend.

“As chairman Rod has taken the unit through many highs, including organising His Royal Highness, The Duke of York’s visit for our re-opening, and when we had a low, out came his leadership skills and he would soon get us out of trouble. He was a special person who was the backbone of the unit and he will be deeply missed.”

The funeral will be held next Friday, September 9, at St John’s Methodist Church, Argyle Road, Whitstable, at 1.15pm. The committal service will take place at Herne Bay cemetery at 2.15pm.

For full funeral details contact Dave Hopper on 07888 677328. Mr Howes had requested that, in the event of his death, that donations should be made to the RNLI through the family in lieu of flowers.

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