IT WAS a fitting farewell to a hugely popular man who lived life to the full.
Hundreds of people gathered at Romsey Abbey yesterday to say goodbye to dad-of-one Quinton Garrathy.
The 38-year-old was killed in a road collision on the Caribbean island of St Lucia, just three months after the birth of his daughter Olivia-Rae.
About 500 family and friends, including dozens of colleagues of the Virgin Atlantic crew member, wearing their distinctive red uniforms, took part in a celebration of his life that featured a number of touching tributes.
A tribute from wife Naomi, 34, which was read out by friends Eleanor Pugh and Louise Green, described him as “my rock, my soulmate and my partner in crime”.
A message from his family, read out by family friend Denis Bundy, added: “He loved life, and he lived it to the full.”
Tributes throughout the service touched upon his great popularity and his love of practical jokes, travelling and burgers.
Friend Jason Hill told the congregation that “he wanted everyone to be happy.
“Whoever he was with would feel good about themselves – he oozed positivity”, he said.
Spencer Evans, a colleague at Virgin and close friend, said: “He was smooth, suave, sophisticated, handsome, caring, very friendly and fashionable.”
The service also featured some of Quinton’s favourite music, including The Verve’s Bitter Sweet Symphony and U2’s One, while his coffin left the abbey en route to Southampton Crematorium to the sounds of Michael Jackson’s Billie Jean.
As previously reported, Virgin Atlantic has renamed one of its new 787s after Quinton’s daughter Olivia-Rae in his honour.
Speaking afterwards, former colleague Jo Elliott said: “He was warm, unique – the service completely did him justice.”
And another former colleague said: “He was cheeky, unique and ||one of those people who you couldn’t help but smile after speaking to them.”
Quinton, from Bassett, was killed after flying out to St Lucia with the airline.
He died after he was hit by a black Hyundai SUV at about 1.38am on August 3, having gone out for drinks with friends.
The driver of the car, an 18-year-old man, was questioned by police before being released pending further investigations.