OBITUARY

David Paul Aimable, 1935 - 2008.

 David Aimable was born in Dar es Salaam in the British colony of Tanganyika. His farther had gone to East Africa to help run the East Africa Railways, which served Kenya, Tanganyika and Uganda. David was brought up among ex-pats who were either employed in the colonial service, worked on the railways or were miners. 
David got involved in mining when he was still a young teenager, bluffing his way into jobs about which he knew virtually nothing – but soon learned, gaining experience and skill in the tough mining camps of East and Central Africa. 
During the Mau Mau emergency in the early to middle 1950’s, he served in the local defence force and saw regular action against the insurgents. Once the troubles were over and the British granted independence to those former colonies David felt the expedient to decamp to England and he fetched up in London, where he drove double – Decker buses. 
However, the call of mining was too much for him and in 1962 he moved to Cornwall and got a job at South Crofty Mine. Early on he was appointed shift boss, but he soon reverted to his favorite position of machineman and it was in this capacity that he is best remembered by his many fellow miners. 
Over nearly 30 years David built a reputation as a highly skilled miner, mostly working on the main developments and many of South Crofty’s lode drives and crosscuts – now flooded – were driven by David and a series of mates. His many mates over the years retain a vast store of anecdotes – some hilarious and most outrageous – about his eccentricities. Everybody remembers his notorious ‘measuring stick’, which he insisted had to be used precisely as instructed to place various ‘easers’ around the ‘burn cut’. Most of us have thrown the thing down the level or stamped on it at some time – but he always had a replacement!  
David’s outrageous sense of humour became notorious. It could be directed at anybody or everybody and he never spared his work mates blushes, either underground on the ‘croust seat’, in the cage returning to surface, or – worst of all in the showers! 
David Aimable will never be forgotten by his workmates, his fellow Vincent Motor bikers, his neighbours and all his other friends. Those of us who had a drink with him and Jennie every month at Tyacks will certainly miss him. He was indeed unique, a ‘one off’! All his former work mates will undoubtedly join us as we express our condolences to his widow, Jennie and his family.