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In late June 2020, Alex Blackwell passed away. Alex worked in our social media team and joined RKH in November 2017. This article collates messages from members of the team who wished to share their thoughts and acts as an enduring memory of a colleague and friend cherished by those who knew him.
Everyone loved Alex, I know this because you heard so many people say it. Whether it was people looking forward to him being in the office or a little moment of appreciation as he stepped away from his desk. My Slack history literally holds a message that reads, "I like it when Alex is here". He was a wonderfully calming and cheery presence to have in the team and it's not possible to picture the office without his smiling face. I'll miss the drawer full of fruit gums, the outbursts of joy at the small wins, and the podcast recommendations (the creepy true crimes ones were a favourite). I'm glad to have known him and to have learned from him.
The thing I will always remember about Alex is just how thoroughly decent he was. There’s not really any other way for me to describe him. He was a good old fashioned decent person. And there’s not many people like him about any more. Which is exactly what made him special. He would hold the door open for people. He would always go out of his way to say hello and chat. He was always the first person to say thank you. He was calm, unflappable. And all this made him an asset to the company - in both his work and his friendship. We will miss him always.
Alex was endlessly positive and I’ll truly miss his humour. Despite working with him for many years, he always apologised before asking a question no matter how many times I told him to stop saying sorry for ‘bothering me.’ He was always so considerate of others, a true gentleman and he’ll be hugely missed by us all.
I’ve never worked with someone so universally appreciated by every other member of the team as Alex was. It almost became something of an inside joke about just how good a person he was. I hope he knew that’s how we all felt about him. As we all began to flag towards the end of a week, there would be Alex on a Thursday and Friday to bring a fresh injection of cheer to the team and often a restocked biscuit shelf too.
He was humble and genuine and whilst he was often quiet, when you hit on a topic he was passionate about he would relish the chance to open up. Our shared love of Liverpool FC was one of those subjects and a weekly part of our conversations.
It’s often said that football is the most important of the least important things and I think we both held that opinion when it came to Liverpool. It’s a great sadness that he didn’t get to celebrate their title win as I know how much just how much joy it would have brought him.
He was a wonderful guy and he’ll be sorely missed by us all.
He was a kind, helpful and genuine man. It was the acts of kindness, such as buying the team biscuits when he wasn't even going to be in the office for days, that I will always remember. To him it was nothing, but it was something no one else would think to do. He would always shout "Have a good weekend, everyone" on a Friday instead of a muffled goodbye. It was the small things Alex but they will never be forgotten.
Alex was a member of the team like no other. His quiet concentration mixed with his quick wit comments were something that only certain people can master. He would always bring brightness to every email, message or conversation and would always say how grateful he was when his work was covered so he could go and play tennis. Seeing how he touched so many people’s lives has been incredible and there will always be an Alex shaped hole in everyone that knew him.
Sadly I didn’t get to know Alex, but there was an occasion when a colleague and I were standing outside RKH with Alex and laughing about a very animated character emerging from the Magistrates Court opposite. He seemed like a really genuine guy and it’s a great shame that I didn’t get to know and value him like everyone else at RKH clearly did.
Like many, my first impression of Alex was just how quiet he was. In time, I realised this was because Alex was so thoughtful and took a real interest in others. He was a brilliant listener. Alex would never answer my question about how he was, before letting him know how I was doing.
Alex was calm under pressure and had a huge positive influence on those around him. He was patient with those looking to learn from him and always eager to help out. He’d remember mentions of new work we were pitching for, and often dropped me a brief note to say he hoped it went well and how excited he was too.
There are so many memories of Alex. The sweets he’d keep in his desk drawers, his incredibly sharp wit and how he’d bring laughter to the team with an unexpected response, through to genuine appreciation on occasions when the team did something for him. Whether that was us surprising him with presents for his birthday or members of the team covering his work so he could dash out to do last minute Christmas shopping, he was always so surprised and appreciative. As we’ve talked through these memories as a team, it’s been clear how especially well loved and respected Alex was.
Like many others in the team have said, I’ll never forget Alex and feel fortunate to have known him.