Beloved Cornish comedian Jethro is being laid to rest today with a star-studded cathedral funeral in his native Cornwall, as tributes pour in for the South West comic.
The memorial will take place today and involves a procession from Truro’s war memorial along to Truro Cathedral for the service.
The comic died aged 73 shortly before Christmas on December 14 in Devon.
Former Celebrity Big Brother contestant Jim Davidson is among the many mourners saying their final goodbyes to Jethro.
In 2020 he told the BBC that “making people laugh is like a drug to me”.
He developed a unique look, speaking in a strong Cornish accent and rural dress, and was known for an often rude style and strong language.
He is being laid to rest under a black and white Saint Piran’s Flag – the official flag of his beloved Cornwall.
Who was Jethro?
Real name Geoffrey Rowe, the funnyman from St Buryan was a comedian who had earned fame and adoration after spending more than 50 years travelling performing live shows.
He rose to prominence in the 1980s, making his debut TV appearance in 1990 when he featured on the Des O’Connor Show.
From there he went on to perform many shows both on the stage and on TV.
As one of the biggest stars from Cornwall, he appeared on the Royal Variety Show in 2001.
He appeared on Jim Davidson’s The Generation Game multiple times, where he gave demonstrations on how to make a Cornish pasty.
As well as his comedy career, Jethro also played rugby to a high standard, playing for Penzance & Newlyn RFC which has since gone on to become professional outfit the Cornish Pirates.
He announced his retirement in February 2020, but his final shows were cancelled due to the outbreak of Covid-19.
When did Jethro die and what was his cause of death?
The comic passed away from Covid-19, his family announced. It is understood he had been fully vaccinated and had received his booster jab.
He had previously battled Hodgkin lymphoma but had recovered, according to his manager John Miles.
Speaking of Jethro’s death, he said: “They did all they could do – it was just so aggressive and fast.
“He was a lovely guy, a very kind guy and very funny. At least he brought a lot of enjoyment to many people.”
An official statement announcing Jethro’s death said: “It is with tremendous sadness that we announce the passing of the well known and popular Cornish comedian Jethro.
“Tragically Jethro passed away on December 14, 2021 after contracting COVID-19.
“Jethro leaves behind his life partner Jennie, sons Jesse and Lanyon, step daughter Sarah, daughter-in-law Stacey and of course his much loved grandchildren.”
His family have asked donations go to the Children’s Hospice South West.
St Austell-based Little Harbour hospice’s Sarah Stott, said: “We were really touched that they would be thinking of us at this difficult time.
“It meant so much and we send our heartfelt thanks to them.”