The History of Gone Too Soon

Terry George set up set up Gone Too Soon in November 2005.

Initially he set up a website for a friend who had died in Thailand when many of their mutual friends could not make the journey to pay their respects.

Later that year, two young men came into one of his bars in tears. They had been to a service of remembrance for Chris Benson, aged 20, who was killed by a hit and run driver in Morley, Leeds.

They were clutching the order of service filled with photos of their friend under the heading Gone Too Soon.

Terry said: “It would be such a shame to put that away in a drawer somewhere and never see it. Would you like me to build a website with the pictures and make it so you can add your own messages to Chris. “That got me thinking,” added Terry, “If this is going to help them, then more people should be able to do this for their loved ones.”

Terry is no stranger to losing people close to him. In October 2009 Terry lost his dear Mum Teresa after a very long illness. His dad Richard Kernachan, known as Dick, died in 1996, of a stroke, aged 65, and his brother James Kernachan, died in 1989, aged 33.

“It was so unfair. He had been out and got a taxi home because he had been drinking, then he got out of the taxi and this drunk driver came and knocked him down.

“I found when I put a message in the newspaper for my brother I was saying things that I thought really should have been more original. “I had to fit it into a limited number of words, and do it quite quickly. If I could sit down and write it now I would have put something different.

“I picked a poem. I couldn’t think of anything to say. But with Gone Too Soon you can keep adding your thoughts.

“When my dad died lots of people came to his funeral that we hadn’t seen in years. They left cards but we had no way of getting back to them At least on the site the person who has set up the tribute can contact those who leave messages.

“I have set up sites for my Mum, Dad and Brother, and although I don’t often leave messages, I find it is really nice to go on and read the messages that other people have left.”

Terry has found that the Gone Too Soon is offering much comfort to others too.

“A young friend of mine, Robert Frankenthal, died in a car crash when I was only just getting to know him. I set up a site for him and told his mum. Now she’s one of the site’s biggest users.

“All his friends use it. It has had 40,000 visits and 2,700 condolences have been left