The chapel at Crownhill Crematorium was overflowing as mourners gathered on Tuesday to celebrate the life of a young Deanshanger business manager and drummer who died last month.
Some 200 people, many of them wearing the T-shirts of local bands, attended the service in memory of 23-year-old Tom Dewhurst, who died following a tragic accident while in the Czech Republic.
Mr Dewhurst, who grew up in Deanshanger and attended Kingsbrook School, was a rising management star at McDonald’s.
Beginning his career as an assistant at the Towcester store, within nine months Mr Dewhurst had been promoted to run the store in Milton Keynes’ Xscape and this year oversaw the opening of a new store at Brickhill.
His boss and close friend Ken Tomkins said: “Tom was a great talent and had the potential to do so much more, which makes his untimely passing all the more difficult for all of us to bear.”
Talented drummer Mr Dewhurst was also known to many in Buckingham as one half of alternative indie rock band the OmniVibes.
He had attended BandJam nights in Buckingham from the age of about 13, under the mentorship of Colin Saunders, and played with bands including Kramit, Ophelia, The Swamis and LionSex, before forming the OmniVibes with singer and guitarist Paul Jackson.
At the Band Jam Big Bash on August 25, Mr Saunders announced his desire to hold an annual charitable event in Tom’s memory.
As well as being a gifted manager and musician, Mr Dewhurst was highly intelligent.
He had been accepted to study for a maths degree at the Open University and had completed the foundation course.
At the memorial service, moving tributes were paid by Mr Dewhurst’s brother James, his mother’s partner Deck and OmniVibes partner Mr Jackson.
James Dewhurst described him as doting uncle to his sister Anna’s two children, Josh, aged two-and-a-half, and Millie, aged eight months.
He said: “People were drawn to his wit and charm.
“He could talk to anyone. He was the nice guy of all nice guys and the relationships were the most important part to him.
“Many people have said this is a tragic waste of life, but Tom didn’t waste his life, he lived every second of it.
“He did more in 23 years than many people do in 70.”
James Dewhurst told the Advertiser: “He was loving, he was well thought of, he was smart and intelligent. He was hardworking, he was dedicated and conscientious.”
His mother, Sarah, said: “He enriched people’s lives. He loved and he was loved and he’s going to be so missed.”