Tributes paid following death of Welwyn Hatfield charity stalwart

TRIBUTES have been paid to a former soldier and charity stalwart who has died aged 92.

Harry Kline, who served as a trustee of the Welwyn Hatfield Access Group for 15 years, passed away on June 23 following a short illness.

His long-term companion Judy Aspden said she would remember him for the twinkle in his eye, his slightly mischievous smile and his impish sense of fun.

Harry Kline was born in April 1918 and spent his formative years in the East End of London.

After leaving school with few qualifications, he served as an apprentice electrical engineer.

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However, following the outbreak of World War Two, Harry joined the Army, serving in North Africa, Palestine and Italy. During his time in Italy, he was awarded the Military Cross for gallantry – although he was too modest to speak about it.

Following further service in Egypt during the Suez Crisis – for which he was awarded an MBE – he retired from the forces with the rank of Lieutenant-Colonel.

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After leaving the military, Harry worked for a number of firms, including the United Power Company, for whom he spent many years in Japan working on a nuclear power project.

Then, following his retirement, he immersed himself in charity work, volunteering for the Hertfordshire Association for the Disabled and the Welwyn Hatfield Access Group (WHAG), which works to improve accessibility for the disabled in our borough.

He also served as a trustee of the Luton-based charity Caraline, which helps those who suffer from eating disorders.

WHAG chairman Brian Wilson said Harry was a “very modest” man.

“He took people as he found them and he was a giver rather than a taker,” Brian said.

Harry, who lived in Berkhamsted at the time of his death, was married once – to June – who died from cancer in 1981.

They did not have any children.

His long-time partner Judy, whom he started dating in the 80s, added that he would be remembered for “his sheer determination, persuasiveness and charm”.

Harry’s funeral took place at Garston Crematorium earlier this month.

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