Our sincere condolences to Sylvia and family! A true gentleman who will be so missed, we have such fond and genuine memories, you will be missed by so many who loved and respected you so much. Lawrie and Christine Hodges
Donate in memory of
- Chelmsford Crematorium South Chapel Writtle Road Chelmsford CM1 3BL
- 2nd Nov 2016
- Funeral Director
- Co-operative Funeral Services Danbury
In loving memory of Donald Aubrey Mortimer who sadly passed away on 22nd October 2016
Don Mortimer was born on the 10th October 1930 in Steeple. He grew up in Dunmow in a loving family with his father, mother, two brothers Roy and Tony and his sister Janet. He had a happy childhood where he learned the value of hard work and family ethics, which remained with him through out this life.
In 1948 he met a lovely girl from the next village Sylvia. He would ride over on his pushbike to see her then later he would take her out on his motorbike. Even at this early age he would make sure that they wore the correct clothing to make sure they remained safe. Many happy evenings were spent at the cinema in Dunmow, then getting fish and chips and returning home by the curfew time set by Sylvia’s parents.
Don and Sylvia where married on the 27th March 1954 in Great Easton church, Don was so happy in marrying the girl of his dreams that he managed to faint at the alter, he told everybody that it was the pain from his tooth ache but, it is thought that, it may be he knew what was to come and that he was just so happy to be starting his life with Sylvia!
After living with Sylvia’s parents for a few years they moved into their first house together in Park Road Chelmsford. When this house was starting to get too small, Don went in search of a bigger house and found a two up two down cottage in Little Baddow. The family moved to Cockleys Colam Lane in June 1965 where they have lived ever since.
Don and Sylvia have been married for 62 years receiving a telegraph from the Queen in 2014 to celebrate their 60 years of marriage. It has been an incredibly strong and loving relationship, each offering support and are each other’s best friend.
Don was a caring and loving father to his four children Michael, Andrew, James and Lucie. He was always available for them to listen and offer wise words. The family always knew that they had someone looking after them and, no matter what happened, Don would always be there.
The children have fond memories of waiting by the window watching for Dad to appear after his trips abroad. Sometimes he would appear carrying orange mivey ice lollies for the children. Don was a man of habit and, after each trip following his bowl of corn flakes, it was out to cut the lawn to get the stripes back that he loved to see.
Holidays were always special times when the family could spend time together, caravanning through France with low flying lemon meringue pies or dodging trees on mountain roads in Greece or trudging up the Welsh sugar loaf mountain in thick fog to see the view.
Don was blessed with nine grand children, Olivier, Charlotte, Edward, Bertie, Wilfred, Hugo, Constance, George and Alice. The time spent at Cockleys with grandchildren has been precious, with them learning the “Grandpa shuffle” when he got one over on Nanny.
Don’s love extended to the many pets that have inhabited the Mortimer’s household. He formed incredible bonds with them, one cat called Ratsy would be looking out of the window a good ten minutes before Don’s return, sensing that he was on his way and waiting to climb onto his lap for the evening. The Badgers of Little Baddow were given an a la carte menu each evening and would bring their whole families to eat at Chez Don. The squirrels, that he had a running battle with for years over the bird food, would rise to each of the challenges Don would set them. He will be missed by the badgers, black birds and robins that visited the garden each day and even the squirrels, magpies and pigeons that he loved to chase off.
Don loved his garden, a trait that he picked up from his father, and worked hard to save his precious lawn from the ever-growing borders and shrubs that kept appearing from Mum and Lucie. However he was extremely proud of the garden and spent many hours debating loudly with Mum, to the amusement of the neighbors, the merits of trimmed versus a more natural environment.
Don started with Christy and Norris in 1950 serving an apprenticeship as a Mechanical engineer.
He was promoted to Supervisor at Christy’s in 1953 working in the UK, Middle East and Africa as an installation engineer. His ability to “get on” with people certainly helped Don when he moved into a role as technical representative in 1964.
Don remained at Christy & Norris for another 23 years giving in total 37 years service leaving as the General Sales Director. He never lost the ability to talk and relate to people at all levels and treating everybody with the same respect, be they Government Ministers or labourers on the feed milling sites he was constructing.
He finally moved to the Universal Milling Technology in Hull as Marketing Director where he continued to work until he retired in 1995.
Don had a tremendous work ethic and, though retired, he set up his own consultancy with Sylvia and continued to add value to the milling world. Working in the Far East with his good friend Jack O’Hara they developed the feed milling industry in Taiwan from zero to a multi million-dollar concern in a few years. Don continued to support his colleagues, always willing to listen and give advice when needed.
Don always treated people with respect and kindness and believed this to be the norm. Everybody he came into contact with thought that Don went the extra mile. One of his finest qualities was that he did not think he was special, he was just being Don. His modesty would further endear him to all.
Don would try to see the best in everybody and would always try to help in an understated way and not expect any public recognition. He was just happy that someone took the time to say thanks to him personally. He seemed to be taken aback when he was praised publicly for doing the extraordinary as he felt this was just the ordinary.
Don lived by his own high standards and these he often projected onto others. He lived by a strong value code of offering respect to all and earning the respect of the people that he came into contact with. He was honest, modest, trustworthy and just generally a “real nice bloke”.
Don was the rock and anchor to the family and cared for all. His one special love was his wife who was his constant companion and best friend. It is a rare thing when two people can radiate the love that Don and Sylvia have and it will be difficult not to hear “where’s Sylv?”
A true champion among men and a real Gentleman.
Poem for Dad
Don Mortimer did things he oughter!
But he always loved his daughter!
With cheeky grin and twinkling eyes
He travelled the whole worldwide.
His little brown case and M&S vest
Have mixed with the very best!
All over the world people loved Daddy
Not one anywhere thought him a baddy
He chatted away to one and all –
Even when they didn’t understand a word at all!!
Grandpa loved to try anything new
Egged on by Grandchildren there was nothing he wouldn’t do
Most of the adventures got him in trouble with his wife
But my goodness he did enjoy life.
His energy until the end did not waver
Everyone could ask of him a favour.
Seventy years my parents have been together
And that astonishing bond nothing can sever
To still cuddle and hold hands after all this time
To Paul and I it is a sign.
My entire life I have felt loved and secure
He has supported me, inspired me and so much more.
His wisdom and calmness in times of worry
His unbelievable patience, he never would hurry.
He taught us all how to ride our bikes,
And kept us all within his sights.
He never stopped caring for us whatever may
Turning up with lunch on my first working day.
So many people have been touched by his kindness
Our lives without him would have been so much less.
My father was an incredible man
And I Lu Lu will always be his number one fan.
lit a candle
is attending the funeral and the reception
is attending the funeral and the reception
Unique to Donald's memory, a beautifully printed A4 hardback memorial bookFind out more