Obituary: Stepney pharmacy owner, 83, loses fight to Covid-19
- Credit: Parekh family/Google
The people of Stepney have lost a much loved community figurehead to coronavirus with the death of 83-year-old Shashikant Parekh who ran his Medichem pharmacy for 20 years.
He gave advice over the counter on health issues, running the shop in Whitehorse Lane with his pharmacist son Mayur.
Customers knew him as “Uncle” and Mayur described him as “a great teacher and man of few words, but wise and helpful”.
Shashikant caught Covid-19 and died at St Thomas’s, the same hospital in Lambeth where the prime minister was treated.
Tributes have come from Citizens UK community network based in Whitechapel, whose founder Neil Jameson said: “He was the backbone of this busy pharmacy for 20 years, a man of few but wise words who we all knew as ‘Uncle’. A community hero we honour in this crisis who was helping to keep us all safe.”
Shashikant moved to Britain in 1979 with his family from Tanzania and lived in Ilford. He found work in a warehouse in Spitalfields before eventually buying the pharmacy in Stepney in 2000. The family live in Chigwell.