Hundreds pay tribute to Paul Howell
Elaine Maslin Hundreds of people gathered in Dereham for a thanksgiving service for the life of former Euro MP Paul Howell. Touching tributes were paid to the “colourful, flamboyant, adventurous, intelligent, loyal” man, and his sons also spoke of their “larger than life” father.
Hundreds of people gathered in Dereham this morning for a thanksgiving service for the life of former Euro MP Paul Howell.
The life of the father of three was celebrated by about 400 family, friends and colleagues, including MPs and MEPs, at St Nicholas Church in the town.
Touching tributes were paid to the “colourful, flamboyant, adventurous, intelligent, loyal” father, “Strasburg's Mr Norfolk”, by Paul Whittome and Martin Buckingham, best men at Mr Howell's wedding to his wife Ayesha.
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His sons William, 19, and Oliver, 17, also spoke emotionally at the thanksgiving service to their “larger than life” father.
He was played out of church to the song Africa, by 1980s American rock band Toto.
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A private internment followed the service at Wendling churchyard, where his father Ralph Howell was buried in February this year.
Mr Howell and five South Africans died in a plane crash in Mozambique last month.
The farmer, businessman, politician, socialite and adventurer, from Wendling, near Dereham, was travelling to the country on business.
He had been Norfolk's Euro-MP for 15 years, after being elected in 1979.
An investigation is still being carried out into the cause of the crash by authorities from Mozambique and South Africa.
Mr Howell left behind his wife, Ayesha, and three sons, William, Oliver, and Zack, who will be one year old in November.