NARU mourns the loss of former staff member Kevin Bernie

Staff at the National Ambulance Resilience Unit are in mourning following the extremely sad news of the passing of their recently-retired colleague Kevin Bernie.

Kevin had a long and varied career, joining London Ambulance Service in 1981 where he was posted to Hackney Ambulance Station.

Gerry Byrne, NARU Head of Capabilities, was Kevin’s line manager and a friend and colleague for many years. He said:

To say we are all devastated at this news would be a huge understatement and the messages of condolence that have flooded in from all quarters following Kevin’s passing have been extremely moving and are testament to what a lovely, cheerful man he really was.

Kevin was seconded from London Ambulance Service in 2001 to the Defence CBRN Centre, Winterbourne Gunner, to establish the National CBRN Centre and deliver training to Police, Fire and Ambulance Service Gold and Silver Commanders.

He later moved on to the Department of Health and finally came to NARU at the College of Policing Ryton, where he was based until his retirement. Kevin worked on many high profile projects to support the ambulance service and multi-agency partners whilst at the Department of Health and NARU and contributed a great deal to the safety of ambulance staff as well as the development of specialist patient care.

Sadly he did not get to enjoy the retirement he so richly deserved and we are mourning his loss deeply.

NARU and London Ambulance Service’s HART Team are co-ordinating the production of a memorial book which will be presented to Kevin’s family.

Anybody wishing to contribute photographs, messages of condolence or memories of Kevin and his career in the service can send them to gerry.byrne@wmas.nhs.uk.


Kevin’s ambulance service career: In his own words

A note from the editor:
As Kevin had recently retired from NARU, our plan had been to include a piece in this issue of NARU News celebrating his career. Kevin wrote this piece himself as a reflection on his career. He wrote it knowing it was always our intention to publish it, but he was taken from us far too soon.

We have thought about it carefully and we think the article is a touching way for us to remember him. To not publish it would rob many people of Kevin’s own refection of a fascinating and important career spent helping people feel better (and we don’t just mean patients).