In Memory

Dave Guy


David Guy was born in 1944 in wartime London, but the family moved to South Africa in 1947.   The sunnier climate suited Dave very well, as he was a lifelong enthusiast for outdoor sports.  Here is Dave in his cricket gear at an early age:

Dave was one of the most prominent members of our class -- a cheerful, outgoing personality with firm principles and opinions even at a young age.  He had a sharp and critical intellect and in his final two years he was a member of the newly-created Advanced Mathematics classes.  Dave played for both cricket and rugby teams, and spent his school vacations swimming, surfing, and fishing along the Natal south coast.

Some of our classmates liked our school experience, some had mixed feelings, and some disliked it.  Dave fell into the latter camp, and recorded his views for our class website in his characteristically forthright manner: "For me high school days were a nightmare.  My last day at school was a relief beyond words.  From a distance of 60 years it was beset with dishonesty, favouritism, and a corrupt school policy".

Despite his general misgivings about the school, Dave found one source of inspiration there: his geography teacher Des Thompson, whose dedication so impressed Dave that he decided on a teaching career in geography for himself.  After school Dave attended the University of Natal, where he took a BA degree, a University Education Diploma, and a B.Ed degree.  Here he is sporting the university's Athletic Union blazer:

A short while after graduating from university Dave went abroad for "an eight year adventure in England, Europe, and Asia".  Here he had some real-life experiences, including working at Kodak and as a porter at Royal Berkshire Hospital.  He enjoyed a great deal of cricket and rugby, even playing at cricket grounds like the famed Oval, and he also took up long-distance running.

Dave returned to Durban to become a teacher of geography and history for the Natal Education department.  In 1978 he married Marjorie Bouwer and they had two daughters, Jennifer and Michelle.

In the 1980s Dave taught for several years at DHS, where he also coached the first XI.  This time Dave had a very favourable impression of the school because the headmaster at the time was the man who had inspired him to become a teacher, Des Thompson. To Dave, the school was "a different place that had regained its integrity".

In 2003 Dave married Hanlie Viljoen, who brought him great happiness for the rest of his life:

Cricket was always Dave's favourite sport, but later in life he became a keen runner.  He ran many marathons and ultra marathons, including the London marathon, the Edinburgh half marathon, the Comrades, the Karoo marathon, the Two Oceans, and the Washie 100 miler.   Here is a photo of him after he finished the Karoo marathon in 1989:

After his retirement, in 2010, Dave and Hanlie moved from the Durban area to Swellendam, a small and picturesque town in the Western Cape that Dave considered "paradise on earth".  He quickly became active in local affairs -- coaching sports, working with charities, and serving on the boards of the Swellendam Heritage Association and the Swellendam Garden Club.   His retirement was filled with various other activities and interests: travelling, collecting history books especially on the Boer War and the Zulu War, exploring historic sites, gardening, horse racing, and classical music.  He followed our class activites with great interest and was very helpful in tracking down some of our missing classmates.

Dave took great pride in his family.   Here he is with Jennifer's family:

And with Michelle's family:

And with stepson Carlo:

And stepson Jakes:

Despite his sometimes bluff manner, Dave had a sentimental and philosophic side.  In a message to the class in early 2019, he wrote "1961 seems just like yesterday with memories that are still fresh.  We were all filled with life then --  youthful exuberance.  And now we are in our 70s -- still filled with exuberance, but not that of youth.  Much water under the bridge with such good memories and wondering what it has all been about.  For most of us it has been a great journey and God has been kind".

Later that year, Dave was diagnosed with oesophageal cancer.  He underwent some gruelling surgery and chemotherapy, which seemed successful as scans in 2021 showed no recurrence of the cancer.   Dave and Hanlie were very enthusiastic about attending our reunion in Israel the following year, but two months before the event, in August 2022, Dave withdrew as he was experiencing unusual fatigue.   Unfortunately his health went into rapid decline, and he passed away on 21 January 2023 of a cerebral stroke.

David Guy is survived by his wife Hanlie; his daughter Jennifer, her husband Bryan and their children Abigail and Amy; his daughter Michelle, her husband Shane and their children Saige and Erin;  and his stepsons Jakes and Carlo.

[Special thanks to Dave's daughter Jennifer for her help with this In Memory notice]

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06/02/23 11:46 AM #1    

John Dickson

David was a fantastic classmate. My sincere condolences to his family and friends on their sad loss

I was looking forward to meeting up with him in Israel, but sadly that was not to be.


Rest in Peace David. We will remember you.

07/02/23 07:53 PM #2    

Richard Bell

Dave was a larger-than-life person, literally & figuratively.

He lived near me in Riley Road, Overport, & we often walked to school together.

The Country Club Beach was a mutual surfing venue, which we both loved & frequented over many a weekend.

Dave was badly affected by the Ian Wallace/Harvey Wannenburg debacle.  He felt it had spoilt the chances of some rugby & cricket players securing regular places in the first teams.  I have written at length about this in Harvey's profile.

Dave was a popular school-mate & although I have not seen him for decades, I will miss him, as will many others of our 58 to 61 group. 

One last reminiscence.  Dave was in William O' Brien Hall with me at Natal University, Pmb.  He had been accepted in about 1964 to run the Comrades' Marathon. It was a "down" run.  The day broke cold & rainy & Dave later told me he said "Bugger this" to himself & turned over and went back to sleep !




15/02/23 04:27 PM #3    

John Meyer

The news of Davids passing has come as a massive surprise and sadness for me.

David and I lived fairly close to one another in Overport and in our very early days of frienship he and I had a common interest in miniature electric trains. We were friends  and colleagues on the rugby field we were both locks and played together in the second fifteen in 1961.Heres sending sympathies and condolences to  .. .   his family non of whom I ever got to meet because of my early relocation away from Durban




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