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Tribute to Ron Baird

19 Mar 2020
  • The family of a Welwyn Garden City man who died in a collision have paid tribute to a kind and generous family man who will be sorely missed.

  • Ronald ‘Ron’ Baird, age 74, was walking along Hertford Road, Tewin when he was involved in a collision on Tuesday 10 March.

  • He leaves behind his wife Gill; their three children; two grandchildren; and brother-in-law and sister-in-law.

The family of a Welwyn Garden City man who died in a collision last week have paid tribute to a kind and generous family man who will be sorely missed.

Ronald ‘Ron’ Baird, age 74, was walking along Hertford Road, Tewin when he was involved in a collision with a red Vauxhall shortly after 7pm on Tuesday 10 March.

He leaves behind his wife Gill; their three children Darran, Alison and Shereen; two grandchildren Keira and Ryan; and brother-in-law and sister-in-law Keith and Ann.

Born in Welwyn Garden City’s Peartree Cottage Hospital on 7 August 1945, Ron lived in the town all his life.

Ron loved music and played in a band up until nearly retirement. It was his love of music that led him to meeting Gill. Playing at St Audrey’s School in Hatfield in 1964, Gill was in the audience and she caught his attention after pinching his beer! They went on to begin a relationship, marrying five years later and celebrating their 50th wedding anniversary last year.

After leaving school, Ron worked at GKN Lincoln Electrics for 25 years until its closure. He then became a milkman in the Panshanger area of Welwyn Garden City, often delivering to friends and family. During the school holidays Darran would also help out and Socks, the family’s Jack Russell Cross was also a regular companion on the milk float. On one memorable occasion, a cat tried to jump on the float but Socks was having none of it and the cat ran off!

Ron continued his rounds as a milkman for six years and also spent time working as a barman for Welwyn Garden City Football Club and the Royal Naval club before a well-earned retirement at age 68.

Ron had lots of wide ranging interests and hobbies. He enjoyed darts, chestnut picking and had an impressive collection of stamps and foreign currency. Putting a couple of pounds on the horses was also another favoured pastime!

Holidays were important to Ron and he particularly enjoyed travelling to America. Trips to the USA included Florida, Hawaii, Death Valley and Las Vegas where he loved being let loose in the casinos!

A very exciting moment in Ron’s life was when he and a friend got tickets to the Barcelona Olympics in 1992. A memory that particularly stands out though was Ron getting accidently locked out on the hotel room’s balcony – thankfully he managed to climb down with a few marks and bruises but otherwise unscathed!

Ron had a real taste for shellfish, along with jellied eels and whelks. Darran, a rail enthusiast, fondly remembers the many times his dad would take him to London to see the trains – he’s sure it was an excuse for Ron to visit the shellfish bar conveniently located by the trainline! Shereen remembers that in later years his taste buds developed, with him becoming rather partial to a KFC too!

Out of all his many interests though, playing in his band was his life. He played in a number of local bands over the years – as bass guitarist and sometimes vocals too – but The Trekkas was the main one. They were together throughout the sixties and even made a record. Later in his life, Ron and the family received a wonderful surprise when his old record label got back in touch and had produced a compilation of the music that the The Trekkas had created.

Gill remembers her husband as a clever man who never bragged and was very private. As part of his apprenticeship with GKN Lincoln Electrics, he undertook an electrical technicians course and achieved a City & Guilds qualification. The pair shared lots of lovely family holidays throughout the years. Ron wasn’t one to sit still and enjoyed going out and living his life to the full. He was very much a family man who doted on his wife, children and grandkids and without a doubt, he will be sorely missed by all those who knew him.

Ron’s family have asked for their privacy to be respected at this difficult time.

His funeral will take place at West Herts Crematorium at 2pm on Thursday 9 April, followed by a wake at the Shamrock Club in Welwyn Garden City. Those who knew and loved Ron are welcome to attend but please note it will be family flowers only. Those wishing to make a donation should do so to JJ Burgess & Sons who will send the money to the family’s chosen charity

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