Ken & Joyce Chittick at their 60th wedding anniversary.
Ken & Joyce Chittick at their 60th wedding anniversary. Contributed

Lance Kenneth Chittick: A true gentleman

A TRUE gentleman who led a truly great life - that is how Lance Kenneth Chittick, known as Ken, will be remembered by his friends and family.

"He was a wonderful caring man and a real gentleman, no matter who he met," Ken's wife Joyce said.

Ken was born in Lismore on July 13, 1926, the youngest of five children.

He lived on a farm at Rosebank and enjoyed all the freedom of country life.

He always loved children and always wanted to be a teacher...he had a lot of care for his children and wanted them to succeed in life.

Ken's mother Amy tried to turn her sons into singing superstars, but Ken preferred maths and English and was still correcting people's spelling mistakes at the ripe old age of 87.

It was fitting then that Ken would attend Armidale Teachers College after attempting to join the navy following high school.

He was turned away because his chest was too small.

Every day he would breathe in the fresh air to expand his chest.

"I'm sure it's getting bigger,'' he would say.

Luckily for his future students, the exercise didn't quite work as planned.

"He always loved children and always wanted to be a teacher," Joyce said.

"He had a lot of care for his children and wanted them all to succeed in life."

While in college Ken proved he was quite the sportsman, playing hockey and club cricket at Mooball.

He was also a talented sprinter and only lost in the father-son picnic races at Chillingham later in life, when his son Gary took the win.

Ken met Joyce at a Stokers Siding dance and love blossomed.

They were married on December 17, 1949, at the Church of England in Murwillumbah, leading to 63 blissful years together.

"It was love at first sight. We had a wonderful life together; we were so blessed," Joyce said.

After he finished college Ken's teaching career took him to Byron Bay and then Ky- ogle, for a deputy principal position.

Ken and Joyce had six children, Gary, Nisey, Maree, Darryl, Julie and Sharon.

Nisey tragically died at the age of six but was "always in their hearts" and never forgotten by the Chitticks.

Leaving Kyogle, the family moved to Chillingham where they felt right at home and made some special friends throughout the years.

Later Ken found a teaching job at Kings- cliff and he and Joyce decided to build their own house at Banora Point, resulting in many weekends spent with tools in hand turning a house into a home.

Ken retired from his final teaching position at Banora Point in 1986 and with more time on his hands found himself travelling with Joyce to Uluru, Tasmania, New Zealand and Western Australia, as well as to Europe.

Grandchildren Billy, Wade, Jake, Sam, Erin, Ella, Rhea, Cale, Stormee, Indy and Jett were dearly loved by Ken and he would often have a chuckle about the funny things they would say or do.

"Every day Ken would want to know what they were doing, what they were up to," Joyce said.

"They were his little mates.

"The kids would visit and the first thing they would say is 'Grandy can I have a lolly or Milo' and of course he would say 'yes'."

Ken's last big family event was his 87th birthday, where his family celebrated Christmas in July so he could enjoy his favourite pudding.

His family describe him as the proudest grandfather in all of the world, a true gentleman and a well-respected member of the Tweed community; a man of strength, compassion, love and a belief that "all would be okay".

Ken died on August 28 at his home in Banora Point, surrounded by his loving family.



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