To the strains of Willie Nelson's "On The Road Again", Terry Fields' coffin was borne to the hearse at the end of his funeral service. St. Benet's RC Church was full, with just as many outside in baking hot weather.
For all the eulogies to Terry Fields the activist, there were short, stabbing reminders of his family life; "Dad" & "Grand-dad" on display in floral form.
I arrived some ten minutes late & found a couple of old comrades in the crowd outside. We chatted about the man's legacy as well as his untimely demise. As the coffin was carried out of the church a hush fell over the crowd & for some it was the moment when his loss really hit home.
Prior to Terry's cremation, Tony Mulhearn delivered an oration which highlighted the man's background & family life, showing how it had shaped his politics. There were a few warm anecdotes as well as a powerful call to remember that Terry's stance (including his refusal to pay the poll tax) were in the true tradition of what was once the Labour Party.
Most of the mourners later went on to the social club next to the church. Terry was active in the running of the club so it seemed fitting.