A former Eastbourne College student who paddle boarded more than 200 miles around the Costa Rican coast has lost his fight with pancreatic cancer at 36 years old.
Charlie Howden, who grew up in the Upperton area of Eastbourne, attended St Andrew’s School in Meads and then Eastbourne College.
Charlie had a passion for the sea and enjoyed all kinds of watersports.
His father Chris Howden told the Herald, “He was so adventurous and just loved anything to do with the water.
“He really lived life to the full despite his treatments.”
Charlie worked on chartered yachts. He studied sports science at the University of Wales in Cardiff but spent his holidays in the South of France, including Monte Carlo and Cannes, working on yachts.
He was first mate on the bigger yachts and was qualified to captain the smaller yachts . He also worked on an 86 metre boat and travelled across the world.
His dad Chris said, “He and the water were buddies.”
Charlie lived in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, and was diagnosed with stage four pancreatic cancer on August 1, 2013 . He underwent more than 40 rounds of chemotherapy and radiotherapy too. But after a long battle, he lost his fight with the disease and passed away on September 9.
Charlie’s paddle boarding challenge around Costa Rica attracted nationwide press coverage, as he fitted the 200-mile paddle around his chemotherapy sessions. The challenge raised thousands for William Guy Forbeck Research Foundation.
After his death, Chris and his wife Abby, Charlie’s mother, joined members of the boating and paddle boarding commnity in a memorial at sea. His nurses from the clinic and fellow patients also joined in throwing orchids and wreaths in to the sea in memory of Charlie.
Charlie leaves his wife of nine months Dalya, his older brother and sister Tom and Ellie and his mother Abby.
A memorial service will be held on October 24 at the Eastbourne College chapel at 2.30pm. Charlie requested that no-one wear black to the service.
Any donations in his memory should be made to Pancreatic Cancer UK or the William Guy Forbeck Research Foundation.
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