Popular entertainers die within days of each other

2015-06-03 06:00
David Neal was “Mr Mussels the Clown”.

David Neal was “Mr Mussels the Clown”.

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

TWO well-known Port Elizabeth entertainers have died within days of each other.

Children’s entertainer Lynda Connellan, a magician, and “Smiley the Clown”, said her mother, Patricia Smith, who was “Gogo the Hugging Clown”, and Lynda’s partner David Neal, who was “Mr Mussels the Clown”, had travelled the country together for 30 years entertaining children.

“We travelled all over South Africa, going to small places and doing magic shows for children who would normally never see a magic show,” she said.

“All that came to a halt when my mom had a stroke in April and went into a coma and was in hospital, but she was still communicating with me by squeezing my hand.”

On Wednesday April 22, Lynda woke to find that Dave, her soulmate of 30 years, had passed away peacefully in his sleep.

“Dave worked at GM as a quality control supervisor and he later moved to the locomotive plant.

“He earned the nickname ‘Spider’ because he was so small that he could find the faults in the most difficult places and the bigger men had to get in and fix them.

“His other passion was the Apple Express train, to which he gave all his free time and he was chairman of the society for a time. He was also involved with the Fat Tracks Mountain Bike Club, where he ran a shop from the car at their outings,” said Lynda.

On Friday, April 24, Patricia passed away.

“Again, God’s timing was perfect because instead of having to do two funerals, we were able to celebrate both Dave and Mom’s lives in one farewell service.”

Lynda said that her mom had worked with children most of her life. She had trained as a dancing teacher and acrobat and during the war she was a Swan in the SA Navy.

Patricia later taught dancing at schools in the afternoons, and put together concerts which she took to old age - and children’s homes.

“To give the children time to change costumes, I started doing magic tricks. When Mom sold the dancing business, she joined me in my birthday party business.

According to Lynda, the entertainers travelled widely and children all over South Africa know them.

“They were both an inspiration to all who knew them.”

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

Financial advisors – Do you need one and should you get one?

The good, the bad, and everything else you need to know when considering hiring a financial advisor.


Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.