HUNDREDS of people paid their last respects to Port Elizabeth businessman and avid cyclist Clem Morris, who was killed in a hit- and-run accident last week.
His life was celebrated at the St Cuthberts Gray Memorial Church in Central on Saturday.
Archdeacon David Grobler, who conducted the service, said he had never seen the church so full, with mourners even gathering outside the church.
All who spoke described Morris, 66, of Mill Park, as a true role model and an honest man with integrity.
Three of his children, who did not identify themselves, spoke bravely about their father while fighting back tears.
“My father was the most incredible man. He lived each day as if it was his last and never took anything for granted. We are grateful he died a happy man. I am extremely proud to have called him my dad,” one of his sons said.
Morris’s daughter said: “He was the ultimate ambassador and lived life to the full. I love you dad. I miss you dad. Thanks for loving us and mom.”
Another son said: “Dad, I only realise now how important you were in my life. You were selfless, especially in business, as a husband, a father and a grandfather. Rest in peacedad.”
A former colleague described Morris as “the heart and soul” of their business.
“He had a passion to please his clients. It will be difficult to carry on without him but we will follow his example. He led us for 41 years.
“We are grateful to our clients for the wonderful support we have received in the past few days. We will miss so much about him but that sharp sense of humour will be at the top of the list,” he said.
The family also shared messages that Morris and his wife, Anne, exchanged on their 42nd wedding anniversary.
“Thank you for putting up with me and my crazy early cycling hours. I love you with all my heart. Your husband,” Clem’s message read.
Anne’s message said: “Thank you for the wonderful 42 years. I could not have asked for a better husband and life partner. Thank you for being a loving husband, father and grandfather. I love you with all my heart.”
Morris died last Sunday when motorist Andre Gouws, 27, slammed into him along Kragga Kamma Road, allegedly while drunk. Gouws was released on R5000 bail and is expected back in court on December 7.
Morris will be further remembered at a Clem Morris Remembrance Ride, arranged by one of his friends, Robbie Burton. The ride – which also aims to serve as a safety awareness campaign – will start at 6am on Saturday from the BP garage in 10th Avenue, Walmer, and end at the pier at Hobie Beach.