DJ Keith ‘lifted everyone’s spirits’
TRIBUTES have been paid to a man who spent two decades cheering up patients at Northwick Park Hospital as a volunteer with its radio service.
Keith Chilvers, who died of cancer on Sunday, aged 58, was also a trustee and cofounder of Radio Harrow.
He started his radio career at Radio Northwick Park in 1989 and became a linchpin within the organisation, serving on the trustee board in multiple roles including treasurer and chairman (the latter of which he held for over six years).
On his departure he formed Harrow Community Radio, to help further serve the community and give local people a voice.
Over the past 26 years he also volunteered for other community-based stations and worked professionally for a couple of commercial stations as well as a sports presenter at the BBC.
In 2015, he was central to bringing Radio Northwick Park and Harrow Community Radio together to form Radio Harrow, a larger community radio station and registered charity that brings together the ethos of both organisations to serve and help as many people as possible in the local communities.
A high point in Keith’s life and career came when he was presented to Her Majesty The Queen during the Diamond Jubilee in 2012 and was presented with the outstanding contribution award at the Harrow Heroes award ceremony in 2014.
His friend and station co-founder Matt Blank said: “Keith will be sorely missed by everyone who knew him.
“There’s not many people who can lift the spirits of everyone they meet, but Keith was one of them.
“A f f e c t i o n a t e l y known as ‘Cuddly Keith’, his exuberance and passion for everything he did was always present. Though he battled cancer for three years, he did not let that define him. His positive outlook was incredible.
“His own doctors described him as a ‘Rastafarian patient’ due to how calm he always was. His strength since his diagnosis in 2012 was amazing and he threw himself into promoting better recognition for bowel cancer and maintained his work as a trustee when many might have stepped back.”
Keith himself recently said: “I’ve never made a secret to anyone that I was diagnosed with cancer.
“Working on the radio project has always been a welcome distraction and it helps me fight the battle and I hope shows others what can be achieved.”
He leaves behind a legacy in the radio station which continues his memory.
Keith, who lived in Harrow, is survived by his wife of seven years, Kim, and three stepdaughters.