The Worksop community have rallied round to pay their respects to a well known taxi proprietor and ‘gentle giant’ who passed away aged just 52.
Kevin Allen, known affectionately among his friends and co-workers as ‘The Bear’, was a co-owner at taxi firm Nunn’s Cars and was known throughout the town for his ‘kindness and cheeky sense of humour.’
Born in Sutton-in-Ashefield in January 1962, he came to Worksop with his family in 1973 and attended Hartland Comprehensive School.
Kevin then trained as a motor mechanic and worked as an ice-cream man, before going on to work for Nunn’s Cars where he rose through the ranks and eventually bought the firm with his parents, Pat and John.
He later met his living partner Alexis and her five children, who he looked upon as his own.
Pat Ellis, Kevin’s Mum, said: “Kevin always wanted children, and absolutely loved family life.”
“He loved his Dad and me, and would do anything to help us.”
Sadly, Kevin suffered many heart attacks towards the end of his life and passed away from heart disease at around 11.30pm on Monday 16th June.
Hayley Barr, Kevin’s stepdaughter, was one of the hundreds of people who posted a message of farewell on Kevin’s Facebook memorial page.
She wrote: “He was an amazing man. I hate waking up and realising. It’s so hard to just sit and realise over and over again that he’s not coming back.”
“Daddy, I love you so much. You really shouldn’t have been taken so early.”
Kevin’s funeral will be held at the Priory Church in Worksop on Tuesday 8th July at 12pm, followed by the cremation in Ollerton and a wake at North Notts Arena.
Though the cremation is to be attended by family members and close friends only, Kevin’s family said that all are welcome to attend the funeral and the wake.
Flowers also from family and close friends only- but Kevin’s family have asked for donations to be made to the British Heart Foundation, which can be paid to a representative who will be present on the day of the funeral.
Kevin’s memorial page, which has almost 1,000 members, was inundated with hundreds of messages from friends and loved ones eager to pay their respects.
Paul Redfurn, a co-worker at Nunn’s Cars, wrote: “We have been sat in that office doing your job all day, Kev. It’s just so unreal that we have been answering the phone and having to tell people you’re no longer with us. It has been an honour working for you and I know I speak for many.”
Friend and Nunn’s Car’s customer Lois Burridge wrote: “RIP Kev, you were a true gent and the only man who got away with calling me Lois Lane. I hate anyone saying that to me, but you always made me smile when you said it. You were my superman many times and will be truly missed.”
Friend Tracey Roberts, from Worksop, wrote: “I can see just how much of an impact you had on the people of Worksop, you were loved by so many. I for one remember your banter- you were never any different, always did your best to sort me out with a taxi with a bit of leg pulling along the way. It’s true what people are saying, Worksop will suffer for your loss and you will be sorely missed by many.”
Sophie Baskerville, of Worksop, wrote: “Bear, you really were the heart and soul of Worksop- the name every one knew and the guy who made everyone laugh. Fly high up there.”
Co-worker Kezza Tas wroteL “Who the heck am I going to cook for now? Now I have bikkies going to waste too. Mr Bear, you weren’t only my boss but you were my friend and like my brother that I was able to ear bash when I was having a bad time of things. Now who do I talk to? I find it difficult to read all the comments as it makes me cry again. God bless you.”
Friend Donna Marsh, of Worksop, wrote: “I remember Kevin danced an indian rain dance on my back garden, to Blondie’s ‘Maria’- he had a massive crush on her. All Kevin wanted was the large family he had. I know he was very happy as he told me, so don’t be sad . He is only up there ordering the drinks, dancing to Blondie and waiting for the rest of us. A man that made the world laugh. Thats not a bad legacy to leave. The love and laughter of a gentle giant of a man with lovely blue smiling eyes.”
Friend Lyndsey Morris wrote: “The big man with a bigger heart. A gentle giant who left so many of us with special memories, gone from our sights- but forever in are hearts. Sweet dreams.”
Co-worker Mark Egley wrote: “I am crying as I write this. You were one in a million and you are definitely missed already.”
Friend Julia Webb wrote: “The soft and gentle bear whom everyone adored. The best taxi driver Worksop ever had.”