It’s taken me some time to compose some thoughts for this post…
I must say
the news of Graham’s passing has been devastating. It’s thrown the whole hobby,
and life in general, into sharp perspective. Really truly sad.
We first met
in early 1990s at Triples where he and Lee Maxwell and Gordon MacLean (The
Redcar rebels, who Duncan MacFarlane had nicknamed “The Teesside Triumvirate”)
were putting on a Boyne game. I had been aware of them for some time as they
had featured in many magazine articles, most recently at the time for their
Demo Game of Killiecrankie (as seen in the yellow magazine Duncan produced –
Wargames World issue 3).
It was always
a joy to see what their next project would be and to meet up at many shows –
especially Triples and Partizan - across many years. We also played in many
games over the years, typically large multiplayer affairs. I don’t think I have
laughed so much in the hobby as when in the company of Lee and Graham.
Losing Lee to
MND 10+ years ago (Nov 2013) hit Graham hard. They had gamed together on a very
regular basis for many years, and by that time Gordon MacLean had left the demo
game scene, so Graham and Lee just planned and executed projects as a duo.
Graham was always coming up with new periods and new ideas, and he and Lee
would tackle them head-on and produce them, painting all the figures and making
the terrain, play frequent games with them, then show them as a demo game. Despite the loss of his best gaming buddy, Graham remained
enthusiastic, positive, and full of the possibilities of the hobby, always
looking ahead, forward to the next project, the next army, the next game. Now,
I hope Graham is once again getting some games in with Lee up there in the
fitting that Graham was able, just a couple of years ago, to put on his Culloden
game with his son, David, at Partizan, representing every unit on the tabletop –
a long held ambition of his.
I’m a bit
shocked, and upset, to say the least. Suddenly, painting figures doesn’t seem
so important. But then again, what else is there to do than assign meaning to
go out to Graham’s family, and in particular to his wife, Dawn, and his
children, David and Helen.
Cummings. Wargamer, Top Bloke, and great friend.