It’s been about two weeks since the passing of John Kynaston, the 61 year old, amazingly fit and friendly guy, who touched the lives of so many people.
Even though I didn’t know John very well, I’ve wanted to say something about him, but I’ve really struggled to know what to say or write about him since he passed away.
What I’ve read in the many tributes to him online, the type of man he was, it truly inspires me to remember to try to be as amazing a person as John was.
Some tributes below…
And so fitting was the hour today, from 3-4pm when his family asked people to run walk or cycle in his memory. So special.
On Thursday I read a tribute written by his daughter on Facebook. It was so heartfelt and touching. I hope all of the jive things other people are saying about him, are helping his family at this tough time too.
All of the positive and lovely things written and said about John, and my memory of how nice he was to me, even in a few short meetings, will be with me forever. He was a really great guy. The best.
A very fit Ultra runner, with his detailed and engaging blog and podcast, family man, active schools coordinator. Friendly, kind, organised, knowledgable, fit. He must have engaged with and inspired so many people of all ages, kids to adults.
In what I know and have read about him, it reminds me that, particularly given the times we’ve been through recently, that friendships, family, connecting and engaging with others is important. Being there for each other and telling each other what we think, is important too. Thanking those who have been there for us.
Keeping the perspective, that life and the world is bigger than us. Things may be hard now, but we can get through anything and things will be better soon. We’ll be able to hug, laugh and be together some time soon.
As I’ve said, I didn’t know John well, but every time I think of him it will remind me to be the best version of myself. To be there for and be friendly and kind to others. I send my best wishes to his family and friends and those who are hurting through the loss of him.
John was someone so special, to have touched the lives of so many people – his passing is such a wake up call.
But then so are some of the other stories of people with covid, or other challenges which are life threatening. This last year alone…
– someone in work had a stroke, and is now thankfully recovering well,
– another colleague sadly just passed away,
– another colleague, and another friend of mine are battling long covid,
– another colleague has thankfully come out the other side of being diagnosed with cancer.
– and old age and dementia sadly stealing the characters and words of some too – and to make matters worse covid is preventing me from being close to them. Stealing precious time and moments away. Such a cruel disease.
It all seems so unfair, but it’s also a reminder to be more you, to be the best you can be. He made a real difference to so many peoples lives, and did it effortlessly. I know I can to, and he’s inspired me to remember to do that.
Meanwhile I’m sitting here, bunkered down, trying to do what’s right in the lockdown so we can all see better days hopefully.
Thankfully covid hasn’t touched / come too close to me and mine. But if anything, it’s all reminding me that life is short, and we should try to make the most of it. And be there for each other.
Life is precious, and we can choose to make it special and cherish what and who is important to us. Don’t sweat the small stuff, recognise when things are hard, and be kind to yourself. Bring fun into life, do what you enjoy. Lean on and interact with others, and try to find joy in the moment if you can.
Enjoy every moment and take comfort and joy from the simplicity of everyday life.
(Here’s a picture of my Dad doing just that, probably before I was born!)
Make that phone call or FaceTime call, take time to be there with those we care about. And once lockdown eases and things get back to normal, I can’t wait to go see my friends and family and be with them.
I did find it hard to know what to say about John to pay tribute to him, but what’s become clear is that he was such a special guy, and I’m sure those who know him well, particularly those in the running community will likely create some sort of race or memorial for him. And everyone who knew him will remember him so fondly.
Meanwhile every time I think of him, I’ll remember his smile, kindness and warmth, and remember how friendly he was. And I’ll aspire to be more like that and to do me best, and try to make a difference if I can, with young and old, every day.
It’s a reminder I should try more to write and blog more, write about and share things I enjoy. His blog was so great, so inspirational and full of knowledge and experiences. So inspiring and engaging.
There’s no way he could have thought that he would inspire someone like me to do more of all of that, but that’s how special he was.