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Published: March 25th 2020
Mike Fossey aka ‘Keep Smiling’ - The end of the trail
It saddens me to bring news of my young brother’s departure from this life following a very brief illness. Mike has been with Travelblog for more years than I care to remember, telling tales of his travel adventures and sharing colourful blogs from his beloved India, where he made so many dear friends he always considered family.
Mike was nine years younger than me, born in our small house in Wembley shortly before the end of WW11. It was only in later years that we became close friends as maturity and family events brought our paths together. A grammar school boy, he went on to become Managing Director of a major Travel company in London. It was there that his great passion for travel and adventure was spawned, journeying to far corners of the globe ‘at someone else’s expense’ as he would later record with some humour on his blog profile. And here too, his love affair with India began.
A keen photographer, he was able to capture the true spirit of India, returning so many times to meet with those
friends he courted with his smile and generosity, and to remote villages with photographs from previous years to give to excited children. His travels took him across much of Northern India, and his ability to search out remote corners of those northern states brought him great rewards of wonderful wildlife, mountains and deserts – and the people that made his India so very special. I consider myself and Janice so fortunate to have shared some of those pleasures with him in recent times.
Travelblog inspired Mike to contribute regular blogs of his travels and his witty and informative writing style and fine documentary photography earned him a large following across the world over the years. This message is for you, all his Travelblog friends, in the hope that you might join in our grief on this sad day. His traveller’s tales were rarely penned from notes, but his memory of special moments prevailed through his photographs, adding colour and life to his writing as the days passed. And, like many of us merry bloggers, he would develop his story from home, sometimes many months later. He leaves us with just one wish; that he could have fulfilled his desire
to visit Gujarat, much of which he had missed on previous journeys, on his next visit to India. Gujarat will have to wait for him.
There are many who will mourn his passing, not least his special ‘adopted family’ living in Rajasthan: Lajpal Singh Sodha, all his family members, and the dozens of his admirers who would gather for parties to celebrate on his return. He will be remembered by many and missed by all for his friendship, his generosity, his good humour and his constant message to us all – ‘keep smiling’, the Fossey family motto bequeathed to us by our father.
Our thoughts are with his wonderful family: his wife, Pat, his son Richard, and daughter, Karen, and two beautiful grandchildren.
So, smile for my little brother as we wave him goodbye.
His Big Brother, David
You can find Mike here: https://www.travelblog.org/Bloggers/Keep-Smiling/
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