Here is the text for the eulogy I wrote to read at Nat’s funeral today. Nat was my brother and its a tragedy to lose any siblings, especially at such a young age, 19 is too young.
Firstly I’d like to thank so many of you for coming today, It means a great deal to my family that so many of you have come today to help us celebrate the life of a beloved and truly wonderful person.
I can’t believe I have to do this, Nat was 19 years old and that’s just all kinds of wrong. Its such a cliché to call death a tragedy, but for someone like Nat it really is, that someone so full of life can be gone so soon defies words and is almost to much to bear.
We didn’t always get on, in fact we used to wind each other up like those little toy cars, one of us would snipe at the other and it would set the other one off at a pace Usain Bolt couldn’t match. I think one of the reasons that we used to wind each other up so much was because we had a lot in common, we both drank far too much coke, we could both be right moody buggers, we even liked a lot of the same comic books and TV shows, like Doctor Who and Torchwood, and for a time even Scooby Doo, but after about the 12th watch of that 6 hour long video tape I did go off it, more than a little bit if I’m honest.
You understand that this is incredibly difficult for me, because I loved that dosy git, I may not of always showed it, and I was far from the best brother out there, but I truly did. But if one good thing can come from this tragedy is that it will make those of us that Nat has left behind closer and stronger, if Nat’s death can do one thing, let it be that, let those memories that bond us, bind us all closer still as we come together in remembrance.
Funerals are often sad occasions, but many cultures look at them as a celebration of life, not a mark of loss, and there were many good times in Nat’s life, like the time he managed to decimate an entire pot of ambrosia custard (as you can see in your programmes), or the time he thought shouting wanker’s in a crowded cafe would be a great thing to do. I have so many happy memories of birthday parties spent on bouncy castles and beach holidays and trips away in caravans (the car rides there are things I may have repressed as much as possible). Memories of Christmases and Birthdays, of Sunday lunches, of sibling rivalry and that shared bond that were Nat here today we would both deny ever existed, and then probably get a little dig at each other for good measure.
I will remember Nat as that pain in my backside, who still, at the age of 19, couldn’t manage to change a toilet roll or see a comb without pocketing it. I will remember Nat as the writer and as the actor, as the hermit who only appeared at meal times, with hair of a 50 different shades, not one of them grey. As someone who could never put a DVD back in it’s case, and as someone who lived off chicken, chips and gravy, washed down by nothing but coca cola, as that contradictory character who hated cheese but loved pizza, as the good kid, as the peacemaker of the family who more than once insisted we build a bridge and get over it. But most of all I will remember Nat as someone I loved.
It seems odd to say at a remembrance service but I’ve never been much for religion, seeing the special characters that loiter about Newport on a Friday night really doesn’t do anything to help cement the theory of a loving god, creating us all in his own image. But there is a school of thought from the Hindu Mahabharata (a book that Nat once borrowed from me and I never saw again) that suggests that the universe will last only 4 days, and after this the last day of mankind, all will be reborn again a new, perfected and at peace, and if something like that is true I’ll see you tomorrow Nat.