Obituaries - Ken Boulton and Mary Griffiths

Obituaries - Ken Boulton and Mary Griffiths

By Paul Merison
15 July
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The family of hockey and Saxons has lost a couple of its’ members.

Members Jen Naylor and Bill Butler remember Mary and Ken and their contribution to hockey and the club with the following words:

Jen Naylor remembers Mary Griffiths
A few words about the very sad death of Mary Griffiths- 10th Sept 1944-31st May 2019. We are very sad to announce the passing of South Saxons HC member Mary Griffiths.
Having known and loved Mary for over 30 years, members will remember her from the 80s as a much loved ambassador and 2nd team Capt. She was a vivacious , energetic and skilful hockey player dashing down the left wing!
Mary always had a friendly and welcoming smile for everyone and it was a joy to work with her whilst organising hockey and teams.
Her infectious laugh could always be heard on the pitch and around the clubhouse .
Mary overcame some difficult challenges in her life and bravely fought cancer at the end.
Mary was also a talented tennis player and her passions were hockey, tennis, gardening cycling and her beloved Dalmatians.
A truly beautiful woman inside and out, Mary will be sorely missed by everyone who was lucky enough to have known her.
Our sincere condolences to her children, Caroline Justin Lucy Rachel and her six grandchildren and all her family.

Bill Butler remembers Ken Boutlon
Ken Boulton – a sportsman remembered
I heard through a mutual friend that an old South Saxon, Ken Boulton passed away recently after a short illness. When I contacted his widow Maureen, I learned that he had been suffering from Alzheimer’s disease for the last five years and, as she put it, is now at peace.
The image of Ken requiring constant help and care contrasts hugely with the athletic and alert man I remember. I first met Ken when I started playing for Saxons in the late 60’s – he was an accomplished defender or midfielder playing for the 2nd XI and occasionally the 1st’s but I got to know him better when I started playing regularly again for the club in 1976. I was 4th team skipper after a few years and Ken along, with his son Simon, was a regular member of the side. It’s not stretching things too far to say that I learned most of what I know (perhaps knew!) about defending from Ken – he was immensely skilled on the ball, a terrific tackler – playing with an old wooden stick that was so worn down you wondered he could hit the ball at all, but hit he did… there’s no substitute for an eye for the ball and timing. He was mild-mannered but tough… I recall an agricultural centre forward (must have been playing in rural Kent somewhere!) trying to rough him up but just bouncing off an immaculately dropped shoulder again and again only to be helped to his feet by a concerned Ken, dusted off and sent back for another go.
I also played cricket with Ken for Hastings Civil Service CC and he excelled at that too… 7 for 11 against Mountfield one day and his last 50 was scored, I think, against Biddenden when he had lost most of the sight in his left eye! We shared time in the slip cordon and his sledging was wonderful to listen to… not for Ken the crudity and downright nastiness that one hears about. He would discuss a batter’s strengths and weaknesses just loud enough to be heard, along with something like “I don’t know how he’ll cope when Darryl bowls his slow in-swinger…” only for the hapless chap to edge an out-swinger to the keeper, more often than not, one Barrel Richardson, also a Saxon and member of my 4th XI.
So, I remember Ken as a terrific all-round sportsman (he’d played a good standard of football in his younger days too) but also great company. Over the years we must have spent days, weeks even, talking about hockey, cricket, travel and many other subjects. On our journey back to the UK this autumn Sue and I plan on stopping at one of Ken & Maureen’s favourite French overnight haunts; the Hotel de la Place in Monmort-Lucy (still in the same family!) where we’ll raise a glass to the memory of a grand South Saxon; Ken Boulton.

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