Popular Owen Rice dies, aged 92

CREMATION service took place last week for Owen Rice, who, with his late wife, dedicated much of his life to Clyst St Mary Church. He was 92.

CREMATION service took place last week for Owen Rice, who, with his late wife, dedicated much of his life to Clyst St Mary Church. He was 92. Of Topsham parents, he and his childhood sweetheart Kathleen Hunt, of Frog Street, Clyst St Mary, married at Clyst St Mary Parish Church in 1937 when he was 19. They moved to Exmouth about 16 years ago to live at Hometor House.As they always had, they made many friends and began attending All Saints Church in Exeter Road, until Kathleen died from cancer in 1997. They had been married for 59 years.Owen Rice left school at 14 and worked with AE Langdon & Son, fruit and vegetable growers and wholesalers at Clyst St Mary, where he remained until his retirement. He started as a delivery boy and, when the shop opened, he took over as manager for the rest of his working life. He was verger at Clyst St Mary Church where he was also churchwarden, sexton, and a member of the parochial church council. His wife looked after the altar, linen and brass - and at Christmas, the couple ensured the church looked really festive by putting up the tree and decorating the church.Football, both national and local, was of keen interest to Owen - particularly the Clyst St Mary team of which club he was chairman and who used to run the line during home matches.After the death of his wife, Owen Rice was supported particularly by his good friend Betty Hart.He himself became seriously ill just before Christmas with bronchial pneumonia and, following many weeks in Exeter and Exmouth hospitals, he became a resident of the Linksway Nursing Home in Exmouth, where he died.He is survived by his four children, Anthony, Trevor, Valerie and Elaine, six grandchildren, 10 great grandchildren and a great great grandchild.


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