I received an email today which brought terribly sad news of Captain Haddock … a regular contributor and friend of the Max Farquar blog. Here is the salient portion of the email :
My Father is Captain Haddock and I wanted to let you know that he passed away suddenly on 10th July. He was proud of his contribution to your site and showed me a lot of his posts. Can you please let all that knew of him, of his passing?
I have, of course, replied to Captain Haddock’s daughter expressing my shock and terrible sadness at her sudden loss. Personally, I feel absolutely stunned so I can only imagine how she must be feeling. I’ve been so lucky to have ‘met’ many decent and honest people, during the last 4 or 5 years of blogging, and the good Cap’n was right there at the top. A highly valued contributor to my blogs and, as I observed during our regular emails, a considerate and intelligent person who I easily grew to respect immensely.
Captain Haddock’s contributions to this blog, and many others in the blogging world will be sorely missed. Always perceptive, straight to the point and more often than not … humourous and the great thing about the internet is that all his posts and comments will forever remain available for all to read. I thought it would be apt to reproduce one of his finest comments here but, on checking, he has left nearly 1700 of them on the Max Farquar blog alone. Good grief! I think we’d better jot down ‘prolific’ as one of the Cap’n's attributes too ;-)
So … too many to choose from but I’ve selected one from a few weeks ago, which is just as topical following today’s news, as it was on the original post where it first appeared :
… I’d agree totally that a free press is both desirable and essential, however, I think there’s a mahoosive difference between a “free” press and one which by a combination of devious and oft illegal methods intrudes into the private lives of ordinary members of the public .. I’m thinking here of the allegations surrounding the hacking of the Dowler family phones ..
Its one thing to “publish and be damned” if the press has concrete evidence to support allegations of illegal activities .. but quite another to use information which has been obtained by highly questionable methods ..
With regard to Murdoch, I think he’s far from being the complete “innocent” and defender of free speech he might wish to appear and is more than capable of taking care of himself ..
I’m certainly shedding no tears at seeing the rats fighting in the sack .. those members of the press, newspaper proprietors, politicans, public servants and policemen (who should have known better) were happy enough to cosy-up together .. now, having been found out, must expect to get what they deserve .. and, in the minds of most right-thinking people, its not going to be sympathy ..
Well … Cap’n, I know you didn’t believe in all that sky pixie nonsense but I’ll be raising a toast in your general direction, wherever that may be.
Captain Haddock. RIP.
Thanks for the memories ;-)
To an absent friend …. cheers!
UPDATE 26th July
I have been in contact with his daughter again, so will endeavour to update this post with further details later today. In the meantime, thank you all for your kind comments … I know they will mean a great deal to Captain Haddock’s family at this awful time.
UPDATE 2 26th July
I understand from Captain Haddock’s daughter that he suffered a massive heart attack which, mercifully, took him instantly. I also have details of the funeral arrangements which take place in Grimsby on August 3rd. The family are not expecting any of us to attend, but a justgiving.com page has been set up in his memory. His daughter tells me that he wasn’t into flowers and girly stuff, but he was immensely proud to have been a Royal Marine and exceptionally proud of her husband being a serving soldier … currently in Afghanistan. Therefore, she knows he would be touched if anyone wishes to donate to Help for Heroes via the just giving.com page.
So, if any regular Max Farquar readers (or other bloggers) would like further details or would like to contact the Cap’n's daughter direct … then just drop me a line at the usual email address and I’ll let you have the details.