Familiar to long-standing BSA members, stalwart supporter Tim Powell sadly died suddenly in February, aged 54, after suffering a brain haemorrhage. Here are some tributes from those who knew Tim well.
A fond farewell to a gentle giant
When I first joined BSA back in the early 1990s, Tim seemed to be an integral part of the association and was a key figure in organising Open Days and Conferences up and down the country. My first memory of him was of a tall, open and friendly man, dressed in shorts whatever the weather, brimming with enthusiasm and energy - just the kind of person to make you feel welcome at a BSA event, especially if it was your first one.
My initial impression of Tim was strengthened as I got to know him when we were both on the BSA General Committee together, he as minutes secretary and me as trustee. He was highly skilled and efficient at capturing the discussions and decisions of these lengthy meetings; so much so that he proved almost impossible to replace when he left the committee. He was also sorely missed for his balanced opinions, his ability to get on with everyone, his eye for detail and his integrity. By this time he had also became a good friend of mine and I have many happy memories of us travelling to various BSA events together, sharing jokes and having fun.
Tim moved to Ireland after a traumatic cycling accident and started a whole new life for himself, whilst keeping in touch with friends and family over in England. He put the same amount of enthusiasm, commitment and dedication into pursuing his various passions and interests as he had the BSA. I was not surprised to hear that over 80 people attended his funeral service, mourning the loss of someone who played an important part in their lives, just as he had mine.
My first memory of Tim was of a tall, open and friendly man, dressed in shorts whatever the weather.
I first met Tim when we were both BSA trustees in the 1990s. He was a really inspiring and greatly humorous man and was quite open in talking about his own stammer, which at that stage I only rarely did to people I knew who stammered. As time passed though, Tim encouraged me to be less introverted and to gain more experiences in my life.
This culminated in persuading me – at the age of 55 – to travel for the first time outside of the UK and attend a European League of Stuttering Associations (ELSA) meeting in Cologne, Germany, in 1996. This experience of meeting and getting to know around 40 European people who stammered was a revelation and it increased confidence and awareness within me. Tim did great work for the BSA, especially in helping to organise and being active at its events.
I last met up with Tim when my wife Joyce and I visited him in Ireland in 2003. He was still positive, cheerful and funny, and was helping to run the County Kerry self-help group. I will always remember how Tim helped me, and others, to be more open and confident with our lives.
Gentle and caring
Tim was a gentle and caring spirit. During the 1990s we travelled to an ELSA meeting in Denmark together. I managed to sprain my ankle two days beforehand. Tim was wonderful; he carried my case and looked after me and never once complained!
From the Spring 2013 edition of Speaking Out, p23