Former Exmouth teacher dies

A POPULAR former Exmouth teacher has died.

Walter Henry Kevern, ‘Doc’ or ‘Kev’ as he was widely and affectionately known, died on December 23 at the Royal Devon and Exeter Hospital, aged 88 years.

Forthright and outspoken Kev will be remembered by all for his jolly demeanour as he cycled around town on his Moulton with the number plate DOC 1 on the back whistling as he went. He was a man known always to be cheerful and delighted to see any of ‘his’ former pupils from school and to see how they were getting on.

Kev had a varied and interesting life but remained a ‘home bird’, loving the comforts brought by family, friends and community.

Born in Exeter, he received a scholarship to Exeter School which he attended prior to the war. He then attended Exeter University afterwards.

During the war, Kev spent some time in Exeter firstly, repairing and then making Spitfire wings before joining the RAF.

Postings took him to Oklahoma in the USA where he learnt to fly and to Germany as the war ended.

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Kev leaves a wife, Sheila, with whom he celebrated 60 years of marriage this August. He also leaves two daughters, Gabrielle and Sarah, six grandchildren and one great grandson.

In 1951, he started teaching as science teacher at Exmouth Boys Secondary School as it was then called.

In 1968, the school converted to the comprehensive school (much to Kev’s regret) - the school which remains to this day.

However, he continued working their right through until his retirement in 1987.

Kev loved teaching every one of his pupils and one special highlight in his career was when he taught a third generation in one family.

His love for his family saw no bounds and he was especially delighted with grandchildren and great grandchild.

Son-in-law, Chris Bond, said: “Losing Kev is a huge loss to the parish and the Holy Trinity Church at which he served on the altar for over 50 years.

“And, to the enormous number of people in and around Exmouth whose lives he touched, particularly through teaching, and especially to the family with whom he always remained so very close and who loved him dearly.

“Kev was always outspoken but for those who took the trouble to see the actions and not just the words, he never disappointed.

“He had a huge zest for life and one of his many sayings which amused us all was - You’re a long time dead.

“It will take a while for the rawness of Kev’s departure to subside allowing the multitude of happy memories to prevail. May God Bless him.”

Kev’s funeral service is at The Holy Trinity Church in Exmouth today, January 13, at 1pm.