'True hero': Tributes paid to Harold Hill family man
- Credit: Alfie Aves
A family man who ran the Pensioner's Club on Harold Hill for over a decade has passed away aged 94.
John Waters, known best as Jock by those who knew him, was born on June 5, 1926 in Glasgow, where he lived for many years.
In 1951 he moved to Harold Hill with his wife, Lillian Waters, who he was married to for 73 years.
Jock's grandson, 20-year-old Alfie Aves, said they are “now reunited in heaven”.
Together the couple had six children, 12 grandchildren and 16 great-grandchildren.
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Jock’s daughter, Margaret Stevenson, 70, who lives in Romford, recalled that they moved to Harold Hill when she was a year old.
She said: “We have always been close as a family and we’d always meet up as the six of us with our children and grandchildren.
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"We’d go on a Sunday to Dad’s and we’d call it the Sunday club.
“People knew that was where we would all meet up and they’d pop in and out for tea.”
Alfie said that Jock, having run the Pensioners' Club on Harold Hill out of the Albemarle youth club for over 10 years, was recognised for his work by then-London mayor Boris Johnson with a certificate.
Margaret said: “Lots of people would know him if he went shopping and they would all call out to him."
She said he would take the pensioners on “holiday and day trips” and would also do a Christmas dinner.
In his earlier years, Jock served in the navy and in World War II as a sailor.
After leaving the navy, he worked for over 30 years at the Ford Motor company in Dagenham.
Alfie said he worked in several roles at the company but eventually retired as a stock chaser.
He recalls fond memories of Jock taking the family on holiday to Norfolk or Scotland.
His daughter said: “Every other year we’d go back to Scotland to visit family.
“He will be missed by all the family.
"The great-grandchildren used to love when he told them about the war.
“He was a great family man."
Alfie agreed that Jock was the "epitome of a family man, always putting his family first”.
He said: “He was a true hero and is leaving behind an incredible legacy.”
Jock’s funeral will be held on June 25 to allow for all family to attend.