Brother Leon Brumant

It's a sad loss to lose any lives, but so much sadder when it's a young life.

Recently, Leon Brumant attended the RMT's National Black and Ethnic Minority Members conference in Manchester. His inquisitive nature and thirst for knowledge, made his enthusiasm infectious.

He played an integral role in every social interaction; whether our tour of Manchester (which he gave live updates on Facebook) talking with experienced conference attendees (in the bar) or when out for dinner. He was always asking questions, central to conversations and seeking new ways to bring people together.

Leon was devastated when a motion he had worked tirelessly on to help disadvantaged youth was not printed in the agenda – although sent in on time. It was retrieved, printed and presented.

Leon then panicked as to whether conference would approve. Being such a well-researched and detailed motion, he had no reason for concern.

After Leon eloquently presented his case the motion got overwhelming support. The look of sheer joy, pride and relief (all at the same time) on his face was not one that will be easily forgotten. It was apparent the content was a personal and emotive subject for him.

For us, that summed Leon up. He was passionate, determined and an avid campaigner — a true activist.

On another occasion, when a member on our forum responded to what they considered was undeserved praise, their response of not wanting personal recognition but to see everyone succeed was adopted by Leon as his new mantra. Always striving to mediate disputes and find peaceful solutions, he had too many admirable qualities to list.

It seems like we only recently started to get to know Leon – despite being impressed by his efforts since first becoming actively involved. We all wished we had more time to get to know him better and further debate the issues he enjoyed talking about. He was particularly adept at balancing either point of views in any given debate.

Our union has suffered a massive blow by losing Leon. Besides his activism work, Leon was fun to be around, enjoyed a laugh and could see the humour in difficult circumstances. Black and Ethnic Minority Members’ have lost one of their brightest stars, one we felt was destined for great things.

Our heartfelt sympathies go out to his family. Watching how he doted over his young daughter... we can't even begin to imagine the pain she's suffering. We hope, above all else, that everyone will have learnt from knowing our young departed brother. It meant so much for him to be a part of our great union. We offer our full and unconditional support to his family at this most difficult of times.