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   Obituary - Lew Huddleston


Robert Lewis (Lew) Huddleston

Staff member
Years: Sept 1969 - Dec 1973

On 4th February 2013, Webmaster received an e-mail from Jill Huddleston giving the sad news that her father had passed away.

Good Evening Steve,

My name is Jill Huddleston and my father Lew Huddleston taught in Nairobi many years ago.

I know he got me to write to you a few years back via the website and emailed in some photos from his time in Kenya.

Unfortunately I'm writing to you with sad news. Daddy passed away suddenly on 10th January 2013 at his home in Northern Ireland. I know you have an obituary section if you would like to let some of the old staff and students know.

He always talked so fondly of his time in Kenya; the school, staff, pupils and travels. He seemed to enjoy every moment he had there. He always had a story to tell of Kenya no matter who he bumped into! One day I hope I can also visit to see what a marvellous country he spoke of.

Thank you for taking the time to read my email. If I come across any old photos i will endeavour to pass them on to you.

Warm regards,
Jill Huddleston

Jill provided Webmaster with additional information:

Robert Lewis (Lew) Huddleston was born on 12th March 1944 in a small hamlet called Glennanne just outside the town of Markethill, Co.Armagh, which is where he moved to at a young age and went to Markethill PS, onto Newry Grammar School and then Queens University, Belfast.

He was a house master at Dungannon Royal School before he travelled to Kenya in September 1969.  Amongst his best friends were John Eaton and Brian Forrester and they went off on many travels/safaris together. In December 1973 he travelled to India, and returned home to Markethill where he met my Mum (Phyllis). Jill was born in the September 1982 and in between the family  moved to Donaghcloney, Co.Down.

On his return from Kenya  Lew taught at Markethill High School until he had to retire due to ill health (heart by pass) 18 years ago. He passed his time by reading, sudoku, crosswords, wine making and loved to read the Times! He died very suddenly on 10th January 2013 at home.

Lew Huddleston (1973)

Some memories from students that he taught during his time at Nairobi School:

Steve Le Feuvre (Clive 1970-1975)
Mr Huddleston …….. (sorry, it was engrained into us that we never used the first names of our teachers!!) taught me Biology for 4 years straight to my O-levels. He was a brilliant teacher, and I used to look forward to his Biology classes which he always made so much fun. He was quite a character, and I remember him as being a very modern teacher in the way he approached our classes and the learning experience. We used to play lots of pranks, just to get a reaction from him …… we were SO cruel, but of course being a teacher and we mere students, he always had the last laugh!!   I will never forget his lovely Irish accent.

Geoff Simiyu (Grigg 1970-1975)
I was saddened to hear of the
passing on of our beloved Biology teacher.

I was never keen on science subjects whilst at school but because he made studying biology so interesting, I felt I would be letting him down if I did not work hard, and I surprised myself by scoring a distinction 2 in our O-levels in 1973!

When you mention pranks, I still remember I surreptitiously pulled a cigarette from his packet that, he had I believe forgotten on his class table during the short break in between the double Bio period, and I stuffed it in the teeth of the human skeleton that used to be in the old Bio labs (remember the old Bio labs were above the staff room before the new labs were built). Mr Huddleston was, of course, raving mad and that was when his Irish accent got even more obvious! The 'English' blokes like you, Will Coleman, and Douglas Brown (the golf playing guy), had no problem understanding what he was raving about, but the rest of us were just laughing! In spite of these cruel pranks we all left his class happy and cheerful pupils.

I also recall that Mr Huddleston was a very good football player with the staff team.

May God rest His Soul in Peace.

Abed Malik (Clive 1970-1975)
I am sad to hear of the passing of Mr. Huddleston. I remember his cheerful manner,  good humour and giving us a really good start to the study of biology.

Alnasir (Ali) Karim (Nicholson 1971-1975)
I remember Mr. Huddleston very fondly; he was definitely one of my best and fondest teachers at Patch, and I remember him well; I can see his round face even today as I read thru the email from Jill. Even though I chose to pursue Engineering at University, a medical related career was 2nd on my list when I left Nairobi School, mostly due to Mr. Huddleston's influence on me in High school.

Narendra Ghadialy (Clive 1970-1973)
This news is very sad indeed.  I can only re-iterate what you have already said about Mr. Huddleston.  He was a man of character and I was fortunate to have had him as my Biology teacher for the full 4 years that I was at Nairobi School.  He certainly made Biology very interesting, and one thing  which I will never forget is that he started to call me ‘Norman’ in form 4.  Even to this day I still do not know the significance of that. He  always participated in the School staff sports team, especially Football and Cricket and I remember the cricket match between the staff and the School 1st XI in 1973. I hate to admit but the staff beat us on that day!!

He was a wonderful person and may his soul rest in peace.