This Man's Life: Uncle Siddy Boy and the Paris match that lit my childhood fire
They say that the fear of death follows from the fear of life - and that a man who lives fully is prepared to die at any time. My uncle Cyril was a man like that. Chipper. Eternally full of the joys.
I helped carry his coffin last week at his funeral mass at Church of the Holy Name in Ranelagh, around the corner from the house on Tudor Road where he was brought up with his sister, Zena, and his four brothers - Joe, Martin, Tom and Peter.
The latter, and my late father, used to refer to his little brother as Siddy Boy. We all knew him as Sid. I used to call him 'Sid un-Vicious', because he was the most mild-mannered, smiley, and generally happy man I'd ever met. He was also very like Chevy Chase to me. This is because he once drove a gang of us (his wife Renee and one of their kids Cyrelle, my dad and mother Maureen and my little sister Marina and myself) to Paris.