In memory of
Miles Sydney

Founding member of the Narragansett Bay Wheelmen
NBW Wheelman of the Year, 1977
Cyclist, skier, sailor, world traveller, raconteur, bon vivant, all-around great guy
We'll miss you, Miles


Photo M. Foulkes: Miles Sydney, New Years Day Ride, 2003

Background photo taken by Miles Sydney: 1979 tour of France,
Fred Time (note his Motobecane jersey) takes some water on a boulevard in Monaco. Thanks for the photo, Miles. It really doesn't get any better than this, does it?

The following is a random collection of memories, anecdotes, photos and memorabilia of Miles Sydney.
If you would like to contribute, contact Monica Foulkes, email: maps@nbwclub.org

In memory of Miles Sydney, article in NBW Spoke'n Word, Apr-May 2005 issue (PDF file)

Miles, a poem by Fred Time

Random Recollections of an Iberian Odyssey, 1973, tour report by Miles Sydney (PDF file), contributed by Bill McIlmail
Random Recollections of an Hibernian Odyssey, 1974, tour report by Miles Sydney (PDF file), contributed by Bill McIlmail
Random Recollections of an Adriatic Cyclodyssey, 1977, tour report by Miles Sydney (PDF file), contributed by Bill McIlmail
Random Recollections of France Repedalled, 1979
, tour report by Miles Sydney (PDF file), contributed by Lee Sproul
Random Recollections of a Greek Odyssey, 1981, tour report by Miles Sydney (PDF file), contributed by Lee Sproul
Random Recollections of a Scandinavian Odyssey, 1986, tour report by Miles Sydnesy (PDF file), contributed by Bill McIlmail
Random Recollections of a Rotten Odyssey, 1987, a second incident on Blackstone Blvd, contributed by Bill McIlmail

Random Recollections of an Hibernian Odyssey, 1992, tour report by Miles Sydney (PDF file), contributed by Lee Sproul

Photos - click on thumbnails for larger images


Photo: Ralph Galen (2nd from left), Miles Sydney (4th from left). 1972 tour of England
thanks to Bill McIlmail for help with identification


Miles with Lee Sproul
1992

Annual Banquet 1992
Miles on right, with NBW President Sue Steiner

Miles sailing, 1960's?

Miles and his bike, 1999
   
     
     
     

Tributes received from Miles' friends
Posted with permission of the writers

From Ken Cheeseman, Newton, MA
January 6 2005

What a wonderful, inspiring human being.

Miles and I were the co-vice presidents of the Narragansett Bay Wheelmen in one of their first years. He was the oldest member (60) and I was, at that time, the youngest (17). We used to ride the temperature on New Year's Day (20 degrees=20 miles). His humor was contagious, ( he called one of his bike trips to Europe, "The Search for the Perfect Pickled Herring") his love of life and his generosity of spirit created a lasting impression- even now more than 30 years later. I remain an avid cyclist and think of him often as I approach the age he was when I first met him.

So many funny, fond memories of Miles. One time we did the Loon Mountain Century together. I got a late start and came up on Miles all alone on a quiet, gorgeous stretch of backroad in New Hampshire. There he was ahead of me looking up at the trees, the sky and singing in a full voice that echoed down the road. I was reluctant to break his reverie so I rode for a while behind him until he finally noticed me. He was a bit startled but gathered himself and suddenly looked very serious. He asked whether I'd heard something clatter on the road as I approached, since a certain part of his anatomy had long since lost all sensation and he feared it had fallen off. His delivery and his timing were so perfect we burst into hysterics and very nearly crashed our bikes into each other. He taught a 17 year old to take joy in being alive, to value each moment and to always have a wink in your eye.

I will surely feel his presence on every ride I take and picture him riding along in pure joy through all eternity. A truly wonderful soul.

-Ken Cheeseman

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From Frank Bliss, Reno, Nevada
January 12, 2005

I have known Miles since the mid-seventies when he became a dental patient. Soon bicycling and the Naragansett Bay Wheelmen entered the picture, as also did skiing and some sailing. After his wife died, he and I began to meet weekly for supper at Chello's restaurant. Mostly, he would talk while I listened. Frequently other friends joined us and these congenial suppers lasted until I left for Nevada, four years ago.

In 1978 I went with him to Portugal and Spain on his yearly bicycle adventure abroad. What an experience that was! I marvelled at his ability to talk to the Portuguese even though they knew no English and our knowledge of their language was nil.

Myles taught me that, "There are a lot of lonely people out there just waiting for you to say, 'Hello'." I have experimented with his friendly approach, and it works -- almost frighteningly well.

Miles was an honest and thoroughly decent man who embraced life wholeheartedly. He showed a constant high regard for his friends and was courteous to all. He was extremely proud of his family, whom I have had the pleasure of meeting on several occasions, most frequently on our return from a ski trip, as we passed by Newton. Through my tears, I extend to them my heartfelt sympathy. We all will miss Myles, but he will remain in our memories as long as we live.

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From Arline Bliss, Reno, Nevada
January 11, 2005

Dearest Family,
Miles loved life and loved connecting with people. Just a few days ago I said to Frank, "i want to call Miles and tell him about my cross country skiing event here in Reno". On a few occasions Miles, Lee and myself went cross country skiing at the Pawtuket Country Club and had so much fun. Also the Bike trips from Rumford to the Girls college, had a lunch and back home we would ride. Many rides on the East Providence bike path and then stop to eat in bristal will always be memorable to me. My very first Narragansett Wheelman ride Miles was very encouraging while on this trip. Miles was a very sweet man with a wonderful passion for life. He genuinely loved people and life. Everyone who met Miles loved him. Another memory I have is going with Frank to the Cape Cod over night. Miles cooked a spaghetti dinner made in oven. The recipe came from his daughter in law. The meal was delicious. We had fun sitting and talking that evening. The next morning we up early for a bike ride first to the muffin place stopped for a bite and then rode part of the canal and had a wonderful time. So many wonderful occasions with Miles not to forget the Monday night suppers at Chelo's. I was invited sometimes and always laughed lots and listened to Miles many stories. Another memory going to Loon Mountain leaving early morning to get to the Mc Donald's for the hotcake breakfast, ski most of day, and then back on the road. Often would stop to eat if the time was right. I am blessed to have had all these wonderful experiences. Knowing Miles has given my life fabric richer tones. I will always have fond memories of Miles and will miss him.
My Deepest Sympathy,
Arline Bliss (Reno Nevada)

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From: Fred Time
Date: February 15, 2005

Mile’s Musings

We were cycling along a flat stretch in France when Miles was cycling ahead of me, almost falling asleep at the wheel, when I noticed a butterfly following him at his right shoulder; the butterfly kept up with Miles for a long time. I crept up close to his rear wheel and heard him speaking to the butterfly. Later that night I asked him
what he was saying to the butterfly and he told me he was talking with Elizabeth.

My son used to collect rocks of all colors and shapes. On a trip in Portugal Miles stopped his bicycle, dismounted and called me over to him. He was sitting on a huge boulder about the size of half a car. He told me to pick up the boulder and put it in my rear bike pack to take home to my son.

On the way to the airport from Providence to Boston, Miles was driving he and I with our bikes to the airport for one of our European Odysseys; his son would pick up the car the next day. As we proceeded down the expressway, Miles put an apple in his mouth and before he knew it he had to slam on his brakes; the apple lodged in his mouth, all of it, choking him until he could not breath, but he managed to pull off highway onto the side road. In the meantime, my life is passing before my closed eyes. Finally, Miles was able to pull the apple out of his mouth and we proceeded to our destination.
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