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Tributes paid to George Barker who was killed when car collided with tractor
11:30am Saturday 7th December 2013 in News
TRIBUTES have been paid to an “amazing” 95-year-old from Hamp-shire who was killed when his car collided with a tractor.
Second World War veteran George Barker, from Ringwood, was a musician throughout his life and was still playing viola for the Bournemouth Philharmonic Society before he died in Cornwall on Monday.
The great-grandfather taught himself how to make websites aged in his 80s, a period when he also learnt Italian and Latin, on top of already being able to speak French and Spanish.
His daughter Liz, talking from her home in America, said: “He was such an amazing and lovely man.
“We had a 95th birthday party in Ringwood this year and his great-grandson Freddie gave a speech saying my dad was an inspiration to him and should be an inspiration to all of us.
“We were all in tears.”
Mr Barker was on his way to his holiday in Cornwall when his red Skoda Fabia collided with a tractor on the A30 in Launceston and he later died in hospital. The retired engineer was the grandson of John Tiller, who created the Tiller girls.
He played in bands in the North West before joining the RAF as a fitter in the Second World War.
Mr Barker married Mavis and they had four children, Gordon, Sue, Andy and Liz.
They moved to Ringwood in 1979 and enjoyed retirement together before she died in 2006, after battling with Alzheimers.
Sam Newgarth, conductor at the Bournemouth Philharmonic Society, said George had been their secretary, viola player and webmaster for the past 14 years.
He said: “At his age he was still doing everything like a young person.”
“He was still playing every Wednesday at rehearsals and at concerts.
“He was very popular and everybody in the orchestra is very sad.”
Chris Jones, treasurer, added: “He was such a character who always had time for you and was good fun.”
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