Tributes paid 
to ‘fun-loving and kind’ friend

Jason Clarke
Jason Clarke
From left, Terence Rierkert, Matt Chapman, Steve Kramer, Dan Deeks, Theresa Newstead, Simon Freeman and Josh Roux
Picture: Ian Hargreaves (170948-1)

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CLOSE friends have paid tribute to a ‘fun-loving’ person who always had a smile on his face.

Jason Clarke died last week from terminal cancer – less than a year after he was diagnosed.

Friends of Mr Clarke, from Wilmott Close, Gosport, have paid tribute to him.

Steve Lewington met Jason through a mutual friend and went to Amsterdam with him last year.

The 40-year-old said: ‘Jason was a great, fun-loving person.

‘He was one of the lads and was up for life.

‘He loved festivals and would go to Glastonbury every year. He would do anything and didn’t have any fears.

‘Jason was known by everyone and his funeral will be packed with friends and family.’

Mr Clarke, 42, was diagnosed with lung cancer on New Year’s Eve in 2013 and it spread to his ribs, liver and spine.

Mr Lewington added: ‘Jason just kept going and living life after he was diagnosed.

‘He never let the doctors tell him a timescale – he never wanted to know if his days were numbered.’

Before he died, Mr Clarke went to Amsterdam to cross it off his bucket list.

But the trip ended badly when the plane was delayed leaving Mr Clarke stranded in the airport without his medication.

Hearing of the bad experience, the Gosport community rallied together led by Tracey Bone, landlady of the New Inn, on Melville Road.

They managed to raise enough money to send Mr Clarke and his friends on holiday to Cyprus.

Marc Jones, from Lee-on-the-Solent, said the community will miss him.

‘Jason was a kind, generous and thoughtful person,’ he said.

‘We met when we were teenagers and we would go out clubbing together until the early morning.

‘We worked together for a few years and even when he was diagnosed, he always had a smile on his face.’

School friends David Watts and Scot Milchard also paid tribute.

Mr Watts, 42, said: ‘My first memory of Jason was him on his BMX bike and the day before he died, he was on his motor scooter racing around. That just sums him up.’

Mr Milchard added: ‘Jason was a lovely man.

‘We basically grew up together and he enjoyed life.’

Mr Clarke’s funeral is at Portchester Crematorium on January 29 at 1pm.