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Mastel Family History

Mastel Family History

in memory of my father

grandad collage

Leonard Ward

4 September 1913 - 23rd October 2007



Whether he was Grandad, Mr Ward or Uncle Len

I don’t expect we’ll ever meet someone like him again

Stubborn to a fault – he knew his own mind

But always a true gentleman – honest, loyal, kind


He spent most of his navy years shut up in one small room

Checking all the instruments, in case the ship went BOOM?

But despite being a Navy man – he saved his rum (or wallop)

And swapped it with the cook – so he could get an extra dollop


Politically a turn-coat – a Labour man before

The unions, he reckoned, became rotten to the core

So he fell in love with Maggie or, ‘his blonde’ as he would say

And Granny, ever Liberal, would just tut (as was her way!)


But it’s not this fickle nature that sums him up the best

Its his routines and consistency that outshine all the rest

For example, every working day he’d go with Mr Bower

For a swim, then home for lunch – soup – and be back within the hour


It’s his love of all things technical - from his Austin to his Rover

And his last car, nicknamed ‘Mrs Mop’ was known the County over

It’s his passion for photography – he self-developed lots

Mastering the chemicals (if never quite the shots!)


Methodically minded -  he’d have everything to hand

Gadgets, tools, and labels, sticky tape and rubber-bands

First-class stamps and scissors – his need to make and mend

His Telegraph – read daily – right until the end


The fact he saw the funny side of every situation

I’ll remember all his silly songs with loving adoration

And one favourite little story, about a friend of Sue’s

Who was partial to her puddings (which mirrored his own views)

Patiently she  sat -  as around the table passed

The custard or the cream – then say ‘oh goody, am I last?’


Then, deaf as a doorpost – with the telly on full blast

Happy as a pig-in-muck with programmes from the past

Quincy, Morse and Minder – deafening St Kew

With lovely caring neighbours (thank you all of you!)


So I’ll miss the shouty phonecalls and his terrible word-playing

And wherever he has gone to, I’m hoping that he’s saying

‘Don’t ever get old dear’ and ‘could you pass the cow?’

And ‘Just pull up the ladder Jack, I’m alright now’


Len's granddaughter, Debi, wrote this poem for the Service to celebrate his life, held at the beautiful Glynn Valley Crematorium in Bodmin, Cornwall

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