I am sure that you were all as devastated as your Committee and I were at the sad news and early passing of our esteemed friend, colleague and recent Minewarfare Association Chairman, DIXIE. Whilst we were aware that he had been ill for some time, the suddenness of his demise still came as a shock to us all.
I have passed our sincere condolences on to his family and have been liaising with Dixie’s daughter, Tracy with regards to any input the MWA might be able to offer. As you would expect the family are very much aware of his strong Minewarfare connections and commitment and are keen that this should be reflected at the forthcoming service. To that end, the Association and Ton standards will be displayed, with Jan Harvey and Sam Cook (health dependant) both willing volunteers to be the Standard Bearers. Debs our MWA Bish has also agreed to conduct the service at the families requested. On this occasion their expenses will be covered by the association funds.
The service will take place in the south chapel at Porchester Crematorium on Wednesday 30th September at 11:30am. Due to Coronavirus restrictions the number of people attending the service is restricted to invited attendees only.
Needless to say there are many in the MCM community who would wish to pay their last respects. The family have been overwhelmed with the response and well wishes and are keen to give him the military send-off he deserves and would have liked. They are currently in discussion with the Crematorium to see the art of the possible with the MW School and MCM 2 on standby to provide uniformed support where possible.
With regards to flowers/donations the family has left this to individual choices. It is intended that the MWA will provide a wreath on behalf of us all. I have asked George to source and arrange this.
The family has stated that Dixies wish was that any donations would be given to support the MWA charity. As you will all be aware given not only Dixie’s struggle with cancer but also that of other members of our association who are fighting a similar battle it was decided at the last AGM that for this year our chosen charity would be Cancer Research. Therefore in discussions with the family it has been decided that any voluntary donations made would be towards this cause. Full details and a link will be provided by the Funeral directors along with details of the funeral in the coming day as they publish his obituary.
Clearly, it would not be possible to set this as precedence for all MWA members however, given Dixie’s commitment to the Branch and subsequently the association I hope that on this specific, sad occasion, you will all agree that it is acceptable.