Dear Friends

We lost Richard Bailey!

I just received the very sad information that Richard Bailey died after he had lost the fight against his cancer at the age of 82 years.

Richard was one of the most inspired and engaged protagonists of the Voga Veneta outside Venice. After his retirement from his  life long business he printed a new personal card:  „Richard Bailey Gondoliere.“
I met him during the first International meeting that Boris Premu had organized in Padua. He participated ithis event  together with a large group of members of „City Barge“. Richard  founded this club together with other – now already passed – friends in an Oxfordian pub  a little more than 30 years ago. One oft the last pints I could drink together with Richard was offered there.

Richard was also one of the founders of the CIVV, some years active a the vice-president with a lot of  helpful advice.
It was a big fun to meet him and other City Barge rowers in Venice.  On the boat he was a very serious man. I remember a Vogata on a Caorlina to San Erasmo. He observed very attentive the discussion between me and Johannes. Johannes in poppa, me in sentina. I gave some critical commentaries. Richard said to me: Shut up, who is on the poppa? Then rowing back I was on the poppa and Johannes was complaining about my way to lead the boat. Richard, very angry and strictly: Who is on the Poppa?

The International community  of Venetian rowers was three times invited to come to Oxford. First time during a boat-show, close to Oxford, where I could observe  Richard as  a perfect organizer. The second time we admired and loved Richard how friendly and attentive he was taking care of all aspects to realize these wonderful days for us.
I remember Richard on a bicycle following our trip on the Thames, noticing that we had forgotten to take enough water with us. When we reached the next lock Richard was waiting for us to give us enough bottles of water.
Last year we came back to Oxford. The plan for this event was spontaneously  made a year before, when both Oxfordian Richards were participants of the International event in Padua. In Oxford I was very sad to see Richard in an already weak condition. So he could not share our vogate anymore. He  gave me some informations about his fight against the cancer and mistakes that obviously medical doctors had made. But his smiling should show me his optimism to come back.

I loved Richard as one of the best examples for a typical British fellow. Silent in his very dry humor, showing sympathy in a certain distance, outside any vanity, and very helpful. I will keep in memory his so characteristic smiling after he had said something.

And I will stay closed to him when I am on our Pupparin that he and his friends Robin and Mario have brought to us to Frankfurt 12 years ago.

CIVV president



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