In Memory

Keith Coleman

Keith Coleman started out wth the class of 1960 but repeated a year and joined us in fifth form. He had a well deserved reputation as a prankster and was noted for his bold and skillfull "gershing" of teachers.

Keith later lived on the Natal North coast and worked in the insurance industry. He married Martha Heyneke in 1985.  He died in Salt Rock on 4th December 2000 after a long illness. Please see Godfrey Mocke's words about Keith, reported by Michael Cornelissen below.

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16/11/10 08:32 PM #1    

Michael Cornelissen (Class Of 1960)

From the 1960 website Obituaries, posted by Godfrey Mocke:


Keith Coleman was an absolute institution in himself & he epitomised the description 'super-smoothey'. He was the first oke in our class to pitch up at school in the mornings on a buzz-bike... that 1st-generation buzz-bike 'bicycle-machine' with a motorised-contraption fixed over the rear-tire! Keith was the neatest, tidiest most well kempt boy in the school. Neatly trimmed and combed hair with a side-parting.....shiny shoes, neatly pressed grey longs, the best in long-sleeved 'executive-wear' white DHS.tie with the original 'Windsor-knot....and a proper expensive venetian-cloth blazer, (not the standard woollen-job like mine), and don't fiddle with his spotless hard-rimmed mottled 'basher'!!. Keenest sense of humour and forever a prankster of note and was for instance the first  'chem-frums, poople-dooks..' teacher  "girshers" in the school! (Girshing was probably invented by Keith Coleman). I bumped into Keith during the Christmas holidays in 1962, walking down the catwalk-pathway on the rocks next to the railwayline along Fish Hoek beach. He had ridden his huge motorbike down from Durban to visit his beloved dad who was a Fish Hoek stalwart all his life it seems.  Keith's younger brother - forget his name - lived in Clovelly, Fish Hoek in the 1970-ies. Sadly the last time I saw and enjoyed Keith's company was at a 3S/6S reunion party at Tony Abrahams' home in Curry Rd, Durban in either 1985 or 1987. He was a successful short-term insurance broker up Salt Rock (Ballito) way and I heard subsequently, via Abe, that he had taken chronically ill - he suffered for years - and when he died I saw his death-notice here in our local Fish Hoek 'Echo' newspaper, all of 15 years ago - say about 1995. I went to the memorial service at the Fish Hoek Methodist Church (Bishop Bradley who had been Keith's crayfishing buddy in earlier Durban days, lead the moving service) and Keith's dad was devastated - he died of a broken heart (I'm convinced) scarcely a year late, too. R.I.P.  (Godfrey Mockè) 

16/11/10 08:34 PM #2    

Michael Cornelissen (Class Of 1960)

From the Class of 1960 Obituaries:

Howard Chamberlin with his clarity of recall has telephonically (today, July 7) expanded on the subtle art of gershing as practiced by young Coleman.

Keith approaches a Master with an innocent look and respectfully inquires: "Sir, um, phlegm gersh??"

Master (kindly): " Sorry, Coleman, what did you want?"

Coleman (eagerly) " Well, Sir, I just wanted to know if fribbit phlegm just gershing you was OK today?"

Master (still not understanding): "Yes, yes, Coleman that will be quite allright."



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