Tributes paid to Hastings’ Popeye

Ron Everett pictured at Hastings Carnival in 2014. Picture by Frank Copper
Ron Everett pictured at Hastings Carnival in 2014. Picture by Frank Copper

Tributes have been paid to Hastings’ very own Popeye, who died suddenly this week.

Ron Everett, who gained a reputation as a well-loved impersonator of the cartoon character in Hastings and beyond, passed away aged 86 on Tuesday (July 18) following a battle with cancer.

Tributes have poured in from dozens of people, paying their respects to Ron.

Friend Sid Saunders said he last saw Ron on Sunday (July 16) during the Pirate Day celebrations and said he was happy and ‘excited’.

Sid added: “I knew Ron for many years. He was a character in the town and did a lot of work for charity in the past. He was a member of the Winkle Club, involved in loads of events for charity.”

Ron was also involved in the famous Morgan’s Train, a big train with lights, which visited carnivals around the country, collecting money for good causes.

The former naval man took part in carnivals around Europe, as well as the UK.

Sid said: “Visitors came from all over every year to take pictures of Ron as Popeye.

“He was part and parcel of Hastings Old Town Carnival and everyone knew him as Popeye. He was so good with people and never turned away when people wanted to take pictures.

“Ron was an asset to Hastings and always promoted the town. He will be sorely missed.”

Ion Castro, spokesman for Hastings Old Town Carnival, said: “Ron was always there and entertained everybody, bringing a smile to people’s faces. We always looked forward to seeing him taking part in the carnival.”

People have also paid their respects on the Observer’s Facebook page.

Charlie Wright said: “Always made my day when he came into my place of work when I worked in Old Town. Always a happy chap.”

Clare Louise said: “Hastings has lost one of our real treasures. Such a lovely man who loved his town and everyone in it.”

And Emma Louise Brown said: “I was carnival princess in 2012 and can honestly say I’ve had never smiled so much and Popeye made it such a unforgettable experience. He will be missed hugely.”

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