Miles Clarke (1977)
Article below sent in by Miles' friend Charlie Griffin (1971)
Business writer Miles Clarke lost his battle with depression yesterday (Monday - 1 September 2008) after undergoing treatment in hospital recently.
Miles has been one of the most prolific writers in the business events industry for almost two decades in Australia and internationally, writing for the majority of magazines that cover this sector.
He was the editor of CIM magazine shortly after moving to Australia from South Africa and later became a freelance writer for Quorum magazine. Most recently he worked for mice.net as well as many other publications here and around the world in the business events, travel and business space.
His knowledge of the industry and passion for it was unwavering. At any media conference he could always be relied upon to ask a curly question or two, and was always honest and fair in his appraisal of venues, destinations and product.
He will be sadly missed by those who were fortunate enough to spend time in his company, and by those who read his work in whatever form and publications it appeared.
He is survived by his wife Ulli and two sons Evan and Conan.
The tribute below was submitted by Jennifer Still (1977)
Miles and I met on our first day on campus in 1977. I was sitting in Kaif with a pile of pamphlets from societies and departments when I heard this beautiful voice from above me asking "May I join you?" I looked up and saw this tall guy, holding a cup of coffee ...
It turned out that we were doing the same majors -- journalism and sociology. With Val Boje of The Pretoria News, we formed a trio who saw one another "every 45 minutes" for the next three years. We sat at the back in socio and kept ourselves awake during dawn patrols by swopping notes and cribbing from each other. I love clivias and I'm sure it's from all that time in the socio quad with its vibrant orange flowers. I always remember Prof Eddie Higgins tellling me "And an extra 10% for typing your assignment" and our tutorials with Jaclyn Cock and others. I have since heard Heribert Adam speaking in Cape Town at the launch of one of his many books.
Miles has been my extra brother since 77. At his memorial service on September 17 in a pretty thatched Anglican church in Durbanville, Cape Town, his SABC colleague and good friend Nigel Murphy started his eloquent tribute by saying "I hate being here." That summed it up for me. The moving service led by Fred Hendricks from St Paul's theological seminary was lovely, with evocative music, but I felt very raw.
Later at the back of the church where Miles was christened, Fred and I chatted while I waited in the queue to write a message to Ulli and their sons in the book and he told me his wife was Dorothea Thorne, one of our classmates. He and Dorothea joined us at the wake at Ulli's sister Trixie's home. It was lovely to see Dorothea again after all these years in the same city.
Miles used to visit Cape Town often from Sydney and he'd look so many of us up when he could. I live in the City Bowl under Table Mountain now and can remember where we had coffee, parties and meals ... In the 80s he delivered my telephone table from the shop for me so when I sit there now I think of all the generous things he did for us, his friends, over the years. From Aus he wrote witty letters and emails and teased me about being a bit of a slow adopter of technology.
Hamba kahli, Miles ... you were a wonderful friend. We will miss you at the Cape Town Press Club. And thanks for being so patient with all of us younger girls when we were on campus. I still can't really believe I won't hear your voice again.