Peter Gordon, GG’61

Peter Ronald Lorimer Gordon, 1942 – 2010

Peter Gordon (Founders 1956-60, then George Grey 1961) was born in India in 1942. In the late 1940’s the family returned to Scotland before starting a new life in Northern Rhodesia later on that year. As the nearest school was 120 miles away from the remote farming area of Mkushi, boarding school was a given and the selected school was Eagle in the Vumba near Umtali.

This school proved to be one of the main feeder schools to Falcon when it was later established in 1954 and it was from Eagle that Peter moved to Falcon in 1956.

From a very young age Peter’s artistic talents became obvious. He was not only a member of the school choir but at the school concerts he regularly sang solos. In addition he took part in a number of the annual Shakespearean productions which were arranged for parents day.

The first house that he joined at Falcon was Founders but when George Grey was formed in 1960 he was one of the founder members and subsequently become head of house in his last year in 1961 in which year he also won the Governors Trophy. During his time at Falcon he represented the school at first team level at both hockey and rugby and surprisingly he even had a couple of games of cricket for the first team.

Once again his artistic achievements revolved around his acting abilities, his singing and later his painting. His portrayal in the lead role of Hamlet was a performance way beyond his years and in addition to being a member of the school choir he took the leading roles in two Gilbert and Sullivan operettas.

Peter always wanted to have a career in the medical field but when his first choice could not be followed he became a Doctor of Chiropractics taking his degree at The National College of Chiropractics in Chicago.

On returning to Rhodesia in 1969 he soon established his own very successful practice. During these years he followed his interest in the theatre by joining the Reps Theatre and on the sporting front played a little rugby and friendly cricket. Whenever it was possible he attended Old Boys Meetings and went down to the Old Boys reunion on more than one occasion.

He married Yvonne who had two sons and to indicate the type of father he was, they asked to have their surnames changed to Gordon in later life. Peter got involved in the community by way of joining the Lions and later when the family had moved to East London he joined the PTA of the school which his sons attended and subsequently became Chairman.

Consideration for his family decided them to move to East London in 1980 and once again he soon established a successful practice. Apart from his involvement with the Lions and the PTA Peter followed his artistic traits and joined the local theatre and took to his painting more seriously.

The move to Cape Town did not meet expectations and unfortunately amongst other disappointments Peter and Yvonne got divorced. Being what he was Peter did his very best to get things back on track by moving to Knysana and once again got involved in the local theatre and the artist groups.

His move to the UK in 1994 was another challenge in his life and though all that he had been promised by various people did not materialise he secured a position in Chester and got involved in the local community by joining the Church choir and later joined a Welsh Barber Shop Choir.

Being a staunch family man, Peter found living by himself away from his family rather distressing accordingly he was thrilled when his two brothers joined him at Chester to celebrate the New Year of 2000 and to bring in the new millennium.

Heart problems necessitated a by-pass operation in 2002 and to give himself a fresh start he moved to Devon and settled in Exmouth. It was here that he met the lady that he married in 2007.

Peter always looked on the bright side of life and his sudden and unexpected demise will leave a lot of us that much poorer. He would always take the extra mile for his friends and family and his intentions were always honorable. On hearing of his death a patient of his in Taunton sent an email relating how she used to live in Salisbury, Rhodesia, and that Peter had helped her mother back in the 1970’s and that she had been thrilled to see him in England. From that time on she visited him as a patient on a regular basis and not only did he treat her but she used him as her confidant and sounding board – as she said a true friend and gentleman.

Marcus Gordon – Founders 1959-60, George Grey 1961-63

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