Music overwrites tears at funeral

Relatives and friends of the late Tim Leach danced in the aisle of a London crematorium and sang along to one of the songs that made him a Zimbabwean music/media personality in the 1980s - My baby's got an AK 4 - at the end of a humanist funeral service on Saturday 1 October in North London.

Tim Leach (with guitar) in Harare in the mid-1980s: from left: Jane Grundy, John Edlin, Godwin Matatu, Peta Thornycroft, David Linsell, John Burns, Rita Matatu, Trevor Grundy and Sam Wellman.
Tim Leach (with guitar) in Harare in the mid-1980s: from left: Jane Grundy, John Edlin, Godwin Matatu, Peta Thornycroft, David Linsell, John Burns, Rita Matatu, Trevor Grundy and Sam Wellman.

Nearly 100 people packed into the St Marylebone Crematorium in north London, as temperatures in the street topped 29 degrees c.

"The weather's as African as you can get. Trust Tim to choose a day like this to say goodbye," said a close friend of the musician and journalist whose songs – sometimes performed in public but more often at his home with friends – were brilliant, topical, sad, cruel, mischievous, sometimes all those at the same time.

Tim was a former head of the Zimbabwean Foreign Correspondents' Association, a cameraman for the BBC and ITN and a man who went on learning his trade in his late 50s when most journalists think they've been there got the t-shirt and have nothing left to learn. during the last years of his life he was attending classes on film-making.

“He was the life and soul of the class, almost until the end," said one of the mourners.

After the service, dozens of friends attended A party at the home of one of his greatest friends Anja Hoffman at her home in Hampstead. "He was a wonderful man and I will always love him," she said.

One of his nephews, Hamish, (wearing a Tim-Zim tshirt showing the English-born journalist doing the ANC clenched fist salute) said his uncle had always been "an inspiration" and a man who spread much music and much laughter before his tragic death at the age of 59.

Post published in: Africa News

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