Born and raised in London England to Irish parents, Maurice Cass was a proud Englishman with a strong Catholic faith. So why are we gathered in an Anglican chapel if Maurice was Catholic? Well he attended a service here when he became a Godfather to Lloyd’s son, Sebastian, a few years ago, and he always said he felt at home here.
Maurice was an artful raconteur. He was always ready to engage an audience with stories containing just the right tone or wit, and very appropriate to the company he was keeping at the time. Consequently, Maurice developed a wide and varied network of friends and business associates throughout his life, some of whom are present with us here today, with many more perhaps, from all around the world, watching this service of remembrance online.
Thanks largely to his skills as a networker, Maurice became a successful businessman in the UK, developing his various packaging companies into large concerns that worked closely with major industries such as music and retail during the giddy days of the 1980’s
Maurice also loved music, and through his connections, his company was soon producing sleeves and marketing materials for some of the biggest record labels in the world. He met some great friends through the music industry, and often recounted stories involving household names from the world of entertainment (none of which I can repeat here for legal reasons) but, I’m sure a lot of you have heard them before anyway.
However, I will say that Maurice was very proud of helping Fortnum & Mason’s & Harrods introduce new printing technology to some of their famous ‘gift style’ packaging.
Speaking of Masons though, Maurice was a committed Freemason, and devoted much of his time, energy, and money to the craft over the many years of his membership. He was initiated into the Lapis Magnus Lodge, number 5024 in London on the 20th of January 1978, eventually becoming master of that lodge, achieving London Grand Rank, and joining several other lodges in the UK.
Later, on spending more time in Thailand, he was a regular visitor at Lodge Pattaya West Winds, and Chula Lodge in Bangkok, before becoming a founding member of Trident Lodge number 9891 here in Pattaya.
Although Maurice never became the master of Trident Lodge, he served as its Secretary and Mentor, and was an active member until the later stages of his life. It’s great to see some of the brethren here in remembrance of Maurice today.
Another of Maurice’s passions was football. In particular, Chelsea, where he was a long-time member of the Executive Club with seats right above the players tunnel on the halfway line at Stamford Bridge. This association introduced Maurice to a number of influential people, including Lord Sebastian Coe, the former Olympic Champion. This friendship would eventually lead Maurice to become a ‘business angel’ for the House of Lords, offering business advice and networking possibilities to the House members.
Maurice was also heavily involved with promoting and running the UK courses and seminars of Dale Carnegie, the author of the book ‘How To Win Friends & Influence People’. Indeed, he loved information connected to marketing and communication. So much so, that later in life he obtained a degree in marketing from The Open University, despite being thoroughly dyslexic. He closely followed the development of technologies and gadgets as an early adopter, particularly those related to communication. Maurice Cass had more phones than any man I’ve ever met.
Maurice loved travelling, spending time in Asia and the US, and even living in Spain for a while, before a change in circumstances back in the UK caused him to relocate, lock, stock, and shipping container, to his condo here in Thailand.
Maurice threw himself into the social scene in Pattaya, becoming very active with masonry, and benefitting greatly from the camaraderie and connections he gained from the Pattaya City Expat Club in particular. Being the hedonistic, gregarious, fun-loving character he was, Maurice enjoyed the ex-pat lifestyle to the full, and was a regular patron at many of the restaurants and clubs in and around the Jomtien area where he lived.
Unfortunately, it was at this point that Maurice’s health started to decline rapidly. He had been diagnosed with cognitive impairment in the UK many years before, and was very aware of how that condition sometimes affected his day-to-day life, but I’m sure that neither he, nor we, were prepared for how quickly this condition would accelerate.
Soon, it became clear that Maurice needed help to take care of himself, and so, with great sadness, his family decided that he should go to live at SJ Home Care on the outskirts of Pattaya.
Maurice was eventually diagnosed with Lewy body dementia, and suffice to say, he succumbed to the effects of his condition, and passed away in hospital a little over two weeks ago.
Maurice had a son called Mark, who unfortunately also passed away, but he is survived by his other sons Justin, Bradley, and Phil, and by his grandchildren Jacob, Courtney, Mason, Benjamin, and Louis.
We will all have our individual memories of Maurice Cass. Regardless of our choice of faith, I would ask that we bow our heads for a few moments, and be present with those memories.