Tom was my dad's cousin, but they were brothers in a lot of ways. They were bikers, they regularly toured Scotland on their motorbikes and I have a whole lot of pictures from when they did it. I was telling some people a little while back about the scar my dad had on his face, it started on his forehead and circled his eye, going down onto his cheek where he had no cheekbone. It wasn't obvious unless he took his glasses off, but the scar (and the missing cheekbone) were the result of a bike accident he and Tom had. On my dad's bike, an old Norton, Tom was riding pillion and a car came too close and clipped the back wheel. The bike went off the road, my dad went into a wall and Tom was shunted back over the wheel. Which had no guard over it. It was a pretty serious accident in a lot of ways, but the worst thing about it (according to Dad and Tom) was the headline in the Glasgow Herald: "Scooter cousins in crash". The number of times I heard "It wasn't a bloody scooter!"...
When they both married and had families, they stopped riding bikes but they never lost the love of it. They both passed that love onto at least some of their kids. My dad passed it to me, and Tom passed to his boys. His eldest boy died in 2001 after a long battle with agoraphobia brought about after he spent a year in traction after a bad crash (when I say boy, Sandy was in his late 30s at that point - I've always been the baby of that side of the family) and after that the other boys stopped riding.
Tom was one of the last links to my dad's family.
I miss him.