Friday, 21 June 2013

Irene "Rene" Stacey

We were informed of the loss of Rene Stacey last week by Rene's grandson and former Nomad, Brian McCusker.
Rene at the Boxing Day 10, 2012
"Rene" was a founder member of the Hitchin Nomads CC and her death, at the age of 96, follows a short illness.

Our thoughts are best wishes are with Rene's family at this sad time.

Rene's funeral will be taking place at the Harwood Park Crematorium at 3.30 on 3rd July and then afterwards at the central methodist chuch in Letchworth. All are welcome.

There is a just giving page in Irene's memory and there will be the opportunity to donate on the day.

The page is and the proceeds will be split between the regional Air Ambulance and MIND.

Irene Stacey - a tribute

I can remember joining the Hitchin Nomads over thirty years ago. The club held a regular social night at the Settlement in Letchworth on a Monday evening. As a schoolboy of only modest years it was quite daunting to enter into a room full of adults. 

I shouldn't have worried, the club was extremely welcoming. Some great names remain with me from that era, people who were the source of that friendliness. 

Irene Stacey was very much one of those names. Although she was never known to me by that name. I joined around about the time that her grandson, Brian. Being young, it just felt wrong to call Irene by her name, to Brian she was gran, but this also seemed wrong. To me, and my fellow “school persons” of that era, she was “Supergran”. This was a most appropriate name, describing the sort of person she was – super.  On those club nights she was always keen to hear what us youngsters were doing, how the cycling was going and how it was when she was youngster.  It soon became apparent that for Supergran life was to be lived, and whilst the body may not be young as it once was the mind could be.

As I became older, it was clear that Supergran saw age as no impediment to doing anything in life and she would do things with as much energy as someone half her age. There was a spirit and enthusiasm within her that can only be envied: always ready to offer encouragement, to talk, and to help. 

People mattered to her, she put a lot into activities helping others, even well into her advancing years. To not assist or get involved was not her way, she did not want a quite retirement, she did not want to be old.  Age was really just a number – what mattered was what you did. This was shown in her becoming a TV star not so long ago in a documentary about another legend of the club, Harold Briercliffe.  I recall watching the telly and being quite proud that I knew her.

Cyclists are a special breed - we must be to still be riding around on bikes at our age. The Nomads is a great club, with a long history. Supergran was a special person in that special breed and it is club members like her that make the club what it is and still going strong after so many years.

She will be missed, but her spirit and enthusiasm for life and cycling will continue.

Jamie Tomlin