Dan Hill, 1984-2013
9 August 2013
Dan Hill, who worked in the School of Social and Community Medicine and before that in the Department of Social Medicine in a number of different roles on a wide variety of projects for nearly a decade, died suddenly on 28 May 2013, aged 29 years. Professor Jenny Donovan offers this tribute.
Dan did everything with tremendous energy, amazing skill and a very enchanting smile. His most recent working roles were to prepare the CLAHRCwest proposal and various tasks for the REF. Over a period of four months, Dan did everything that was needed to complete the CLAHRCwest bid, including extracting and documenting details of existing organisations from the web, compiling complex information from a variety of sources and transforming it into useful documents, formatting the final documents, and even proof-reading the final proposal on Saturday afternoon to enable us to meet the submission deadline. He worked incredibly hard with great enthusiasm. He was brilliant, and without him the proposal would not have been completed to such a high standard. The presentation of the proposal was particularly noted by the awarding panel, and Dan’s contribution to the successful CLAHRCwestwill be remembered and marked when it commences in January 2014.
Dan had a wonderful, quirky sense of humour. His ready smile and easy manner drew people to him and he had friends in all parts of the School. He was loved by everyone who knew him; those he had worked closely with and people he met just briefly - over the photocopier, for example. He had great talents away from work. He was a great bass guitarist, aka Hugo Bass, and often had his guitar propped up against his desk, ready for a gig in the evening.
Dan was a true Bristol citizen. Born and brought up in Bristol, he abhorred any sort of privilege or hierarchy and had a strong sense of justice and equality, giving up time and energy to support homeless people and other political causes. If you wish to join his friends and colleagues and donate to a charity in Dan’s name, visit the JustGiving website.
Dan's most readily apparent characteristic was that he was always incredibly and inexhaustibly helpful. We miss him terribly. His mother, Jan, has worked with us for more than 15 years, and we are offering her as much support as we can. It was amazing to see the hundreds of people who came to his funeral, all devastated and wanting to remember such a lovely, kind, gentle man who somehow managed to touch so many lives.
It still seems impossible that he has gone. We will always remember his beautiful smiling face, head tilted on one side, saying "Is there anything else I can help you with?"
Shine on you crazy diamond.