This letter was written by Dennis to be read at his funeral...
TO ALL MY FAMILY, FRIENDS, COLLEAGUES, AND PEOPLE I HAVE BEEN LUCKY ENOUGH TO KNOW
In November 1996 at my 50th Birthday party I remember saying to those that were there, that over my lifetime I have had to face certain personal crises. One of these was cancer, which was originally diagnosed when I was just 36 years old. I said at my 50th that I had beaten it and was proud to have done so. Little did I, or the Medical staff, know that it had been slowly growing until it began to affect certain parts of my body. I have to admit that the last 5 years and particularly the recent past has been a struggle for not just me but for all those around me. You know who you are, thank you for your support.
I have been lucky in that I have had about 15 years of relatively good health, since cancer was diagnosed. In that time I have played competitive inter club squash and golf for the City Club, been to numerous South Island Golf Championships, raced and ridden socially motorcycles on tracks and wonderful roads all over the country, built a new house for Gaynor, Leonie, and Craig, developed our holiday home in Akaroa, helped my brother Jon in setting a land speed record riding a Britten V1000 ( 188mph or 302 kph a record which still stands today ), and of course built up and consolidated Wraggs Production Ltd to not only give us an income for our family but to also provide employment for all our loyal staff that we have been lucky enough to employ over the years. Whilst all this has been happening please do not forget that Gaynor has been with me through thick and thin during this period and has been a wonderful wife, friend, and mentor to me.
The BEARS Motorcycle Club was a keen interest for me, being a founder member 22 years ago, and now a very much honoured life member. Our annual Sound of Thunder Meetings, speed trials, and road runs have been a lot of fun. I have met many good people over the years and had some good times. The friendships built up over the years never disappear.
To all the people I have met through Wraggs starting with Gary & Ian. I want to thank you all for allowing us stay in business for 27 years so far. A business is only as good as its staff and I have seen a few come and go over the years. Mostly I have been impressed with what I have seen and have been amazed at the ability of some when given the opportunity. I know girls, that we are all getting older together, but I hope Wraggs has fulfilled a corner of your lives in the time you have been with us.
I am confident that Lyn, Paul, and Gaynor will carry the business forward efficiently because they are all very capable people in their own right, know the trade, and get on well with others. I admire them for giving it a go. I have been extremely lucky to not only have had people of a very high calibre I could call on but also I have had a period of time to put plans into action.
To all our customers past and present a big thanks for all your support. When you are lucky enough to build up a rapport with your clients the relationship almost becomes one of friendship. I believe we have achieved that. Believe me it makes working a lot easier.
I want to acknowledge all the people I have met through my various investments particularly Robin. In fact not many people will know that I was the Best Man at Robin & Francis’s wedding. I have been involved in all sorts of projects and learnt quite quickly that you must be patient, take the good with the bad, and be comfortable within yourself of decisions you may make. They will not always be the right ones but the secret is to make more right than wrong.
I will close by offering the biggest thank you to all my family. I was very lucky to be brought up in a ‘real’ family and since Dad died at just 55 years, my Mum, who I love dearly, has continued on the good old family traditions of right and wrong. I think this has bought us all close together and made us respectful of not just each other but also of others. We have had some wonderful family times together, collectively and individually, and I thank you all for that. Even having my hair cut all my life has been carried out by Dad and for the last thirty odd years, Lindsay. We have stuck together. Latterly I have been lucky enough to have been able to employ at work my sister, Sue. It has been a true family affair. But to still be working regularly in their early 80’s as Mum has will take some beating. Today carrying out their last duty for me will be Gary, Lindsay, Jon, my only sister Sue, my son Craig, and Gaynor’s brother Geoff, who is part of our family of course. To my immediate family, Gaynor, Leonie, Leonie’s partner Michael, and Craig I cannot say enough. You have all been wonderful to me and all are level headed sensible people. I cannot put down in a few lines how I truly feel but I am very proud of you. Your careers are tracking along nicely and I want to wish you every success. Doors will open and shut for you during life, try and open the right ones. Writing a few lines does not seem to do all these years justice.
Finally Gaynor thank you for being who you are and being there for me when most needed
I LOVE YOU ALL
Share a Story
You need to login in order to share a story about this memorial.