A Tribute to Guy Lewis

A week and a half ago we lost a family friend, suddenly and in very tragic circumstances. The story has now been in the local paper here


Suffice to say it is not an easy read but everything said about Guy in it is true.

Guy filled a room almost literally. His enormous muscles were matched by an enormous singing voice and the perfect story reading voice. He was dedicated to his business but also to every single child that passed through the doors of Brighton Gymboree and that is why I feel the need to leave a brief tribute to him here.

I have been writing about my children and parenting for a year now and although they are sometimes the subject of amusing anecdotes and gags, I hope you could tell how proud I was of them. A large part of their development was down to Guy, his best mate Bobby and their weekly classes and open gyms. It’s where Boy leaned to climb and Whirlwind learned to throw balls and both learned to sit still and listen to a story. Guy treated his little charges with love and respect and equality and never, ever lost a room.

Though the twins are younger than my eldest he became a role model and a parenting hero. Some of my games and reading voices are copied wholesale from Guy never mind how to maintain discipline using respect.

The house is full of reminders. Gymboree sponsored a couple of ventures my wife is involved in and we still have the toys that Boy and Whirlwind got from their Gymboree birthday parties.

I’m sorry this is not the usual opinionated sillyness. I realise it’s self indulgent. But there’s no point writing about my parenting and children without explaining that someone who was inspirationally involved in it has gone.

Our thoughts are with Hanna, Bobby and the children.


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  1. #1 by Mummy Glitzer on January 19, 2013 - 3:35 pm

    He sounds like the sort of man who it was a pleasure to know.

  2. #3 by Laura Precious on January 19, 2013 - 6:54 pm

    A lovely and very accurate tribute. We only went to Gymboree for about a year before moving from Brighton some 3 years ago but Guy is the kind of person who you remember well. He’s touched many people’s lives in a very positive way.

  3. #5 by jbmumofone on January 19, 2013 - 7:50 pm

    Very sad news. A lovely tribute x

  4. #7 by sasha on January 20, 2013 - 9:48 pm

    I knew Guy through friends although I only met him a few times,he was the loveliest man I have ever met,he was so nice & friendly.My thought are with Hanna,his children,his family & friends.xx

  5. #9 by Jenny on January 23, 2013 - 2:43 pm

    We were so saddened to hear of the death of Guy.
    Guy was a wonderful family man, he was always smiling and had all the children at Gymboree smiling with him.
    My heart goes out to his wife Hanna, his children, his best buddy Bobby and all his family & friends.
    Love Jennifer (Sienna & Tobys Mummy x x x)

  6. #10 by jon on January 26, 2013 - 7:40 pm

    I knew Guy ever since he started at Gymboree , i admired his ability with children and often heard him singing when i was working near Gymboree. His untimely tragic death has shocked me as he was so fit and full of life. He was one of Churchill Squares big charactors . R.I.P Guy.

  7. #11 by Lesley Stratton Hughes on January 30, 2013 - 11:08 pm

    i just found out about this news and i feel very sad. We spent around 4 and half years at gymbo -from 6 months until school starting and the reason we kept going for so long was because of Guy and his personality and connection to each child and their different needs. My son, louie now 8 absolutely loved and respected guy-(Bobbie too) and learned so much with him because of how fun the classes were. When i was trying to get Louie into a particular school, guy wrote me a fantastic letter about Louie to support my appeal and i was so appreciative of that.

    Yes, he was a big, beautiful memorable character who made a great impression on my boys’ early development years. Just two days ago, louie asked to go and visit him to see if he would be allowed to help out with a class…

    i’m thinking of Hannah and her twins and new baby girl-sending lots of big love

    Lesley and Louie XXXX

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