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News > In memoriam > Bernard Chiswell (59) Nelson

Bernard Chiswell (59) Nelson

It is with great sadness that we announce of the death of Bernard "Chis" Chiswell (59) on 30 May 2020
30 May 2020
In memoriam

John Hawkins (59) Drake has written some words on his good friend "Chis"...

“Bernie or Chis” joined Churcher’s College as a boarder in 1956 when his father, his mother and his sister were posted to Malta by the RAF. Whilst in the 6th form he joined the RAF section of the CCF and enjoyed experiencing the thrill of flying a Tiger Moth.

Having left school he tried accountancy which didn’t suit, so entered retail management training, It was during this period he went to an RAF Ball where met and subsequently married Christine. The opportunity to work in Africa occurred and they, together with their son Simon, went to work in Zambia where their daughter Yvette was born.   From Zambia they moved to Southern Rhodesia where life was both difficult and dangerous because of the conflict between the government of Ian Smith and those demanding independence. Bernie was called up into the Rhodesian Air Force, and Christine became increasingly worried when he was often away for long periods of time in the conflict area.  One morning the family left for South Africa taking all they could carry in a suitcase and leaving everything else behind. Still in supermarket retail management Bernie worked in both Johannesburg and Durban until Christine’s failing health led them back to the UK where he joined Sainsbury’s as a store manager.  Sadly after 23 years of marriage Christine passed away in 2000. 
Bernie married Carin in 2004; she, like her husband had lived in Africa for some time. They were an ideally suited couple who had many interests in common.  It was now that he left working in retail and joined BOCH where he remained until he retired.

“Chis” enjoyed many aspects of retirement but two activities gave him tremendous pleasure; music and flying.  He had a good bass voice and he joined Carin in the local “a capella” choir “Jubilate “ . He relished the challenging demands of singing without instrumental support, and the choir gave him the opportunity to sing in France, one of his favourite destinations.

Bernie had a “man shed” outside his back door where he built large radio-controlled model aeroplanes; these he flew at the nearby flying club. His sense of public duty led him to join the Parish Council in his village and he was quickly elected to be its Chairman.  He was a splendid person to have as a quiz team member as his overall knowledge and memory for facts was worth a good few points. He and Carin enjoyed life to the full including visiting his beloved Africa and sailing with his friend on their boat.  “Chis” was always popular, always friendly, always the entertaining raconteur. It was always a pleasure to be in his company and he will be sadly missed by everyone who knew him.

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