An appreciation from one of his many friends
The sudden death of “Bob” Ewen just before Christmas leaves a gap that the older readers of Motor Sport must feel acutely. A staunch supporter of the vintage-car movement since the early days, Bob meant much to those who have that movement near their hearts. RB 25, his 14/40 Delage, was a homely sight on the roads round his practice, and his driving of the Itala is, of course, fresh in the memories of all of us. Motoring sport has to have its stars, but Bob’s passing reminds us of the way in which those stars are borne up by a solid background of amateur enthusiasts, of which Bob was so supreme an example. Indeed, his example was unsurpassed. Often handicapped right out of the race, yet he drove hard for the pure joy of the thing, and what was, perhaps, of more importance, lent each meeting that he attended his able judgment and his quiet, dry sense of humour that made us all his friends.
Surely no man ever had more friends than Bob, for it was literally impossible not to like him. If you could not laugh with him, then poor indeed was your motoring soul. It is perhaps some consolation to his own that he gave so much of his time and energy to mending the health of his fellow men and women, surety a typically self-sacrificing pursuit; but that, at first sight, only seems to make his passing all the more sad. But, as Lord Nuffield once wrote of a colleague: “It was God’s will that he should be taken”; and we can but abide by that decision and thank God that in these times of frequent pettiness and half sincerity we have been vouchsafed, even for so short a time, this example of such a good man as Bob Ewen.
To Jean, his wife, and his two children we extend our deepest sympathy. — Costin Denham.