by H.W. Kinsey
Teddy Winder, as he was affectionately known to all his friends, was born in London on 11 March, 1897. He served in France during the First Wold War as a Lieutenant, later Acting Captain, in the East Surrey Regiment. He was in action at Ypres, on the Somme where he was severely wounded in the leg and at Flers, where tanks went into action for the first time. He spent some years in hospital until his leg eventually healed. At school he had excelled in most sports and had exhibited a particular talent for art, consequently during and after his convalescence, he studied at the Slade School of Art, University of London for two years.
Teddy Winder came to South Africa in 1920 and joined the ‘Rand Daily Mail’ as a sports cartoonist. For the following 60 years he worked for the South African Associated Newspapers Group as a cartoonist, and as a cartographer. During the Second World War, although he could not be released from his newspaper work, he was asked to lecture in Johannesburg and at Roberts Heights on the making of sketch maps, the use of natural features, night navigation and survival.
As a cartoonist he was painstaking to ensure that his drawings were correct in every detail and his insistence on good draughtmanship was the hallmark of his career. Paying tribute at his funeral service the Rev Bill Marshall said that Teddy Winder was ‘never bitter nor revengeful, and with skilful use of pen or brush he left impressions not only on paper and canvas but in the hearts and souls of men and women’. His ability to do humorous sketches was recalled by Mr Joel Mervis who said ‘It was as an illustrator for the “Passing Show” that Teddy Winder showed his lively sense of humour. He had a wonderfully humorous touch when it came to thumbnail sketches which accompanied the article for more than 25 years’.
For many years, until his retirement in 1980, he wrote delightful art reviews in impeccable style and although he was not afraid to criticise inferior work his criticism was neither harsh nor vindictive.
Teddy Winder was a foundation member of the South African Military History Society, and served on its first Executive Committee for about three years. He had a keen interest in the affairs of the Society, was a regular attender at its monthly meetings, and seldom missed any of its tours.
He made a significant contribution over the years to the community in the form of his war service, his cartoons and cartography, his art and his writing, and we are grateful for the example which he set for all of us. He was one of nature’s gentlemen and a devoted husband and father who is mourned, not only by his family but also by his many friends and all the members of the Military History Society.
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