In conversation with Michael Blaine, we thought we would not get too many to attend the funeral, so we decided to pop in on Facebook to invite Veterans and the community to attend Mr Fortunes funeral. Mr fortune keep to himself but was a humble man. It was the least we could do.
The Sub Branch was called to help a British Soldier who had passed away in the Ipswich Hospital, alone and no family. Of course, we said yes, we would provide a poppy service for this veteran.
We got in contact with the Funeral Home and started the process. We had to change the venue as the interest to attend the funeral was growing rapidly. Defence Minister contacted the office to ask how she could help, defence members from 7th Brigade (Enoggera) call the office to assist by sending Military personal in uniform as did the RAAF Base Amberley.
Sec was contacted by many news outlets, channel 10, The project, ABC news, 2GB radio and many more. Deputy President Michael Blaine and I were overwhelmed by the response and the potential attendance of so many people. We just wanted to draw a crowd to give a British Soldier the send of he so deserved. I reached out to one of our members Craig Cartlidge (ex-British soldier) to source a Union flag, which he did. He also contacted the ex-British serviceman’s Assn in Brisbane to inform them.
They jumped at the chance to participate and offered to be Pall bearers. On the day of the Funeral (9th March 2020) the weather was like a wet British day. Rained all day but did not stop the crowds from forming.
We had nearly 400 people attend. Official Military Mourners, Patriot Veterans Motor cycle group, and many more. Michael provided the poppy service, which is always outstanding. Thank you, Michael. The funeral was well received by all.
We just could not thank the Ipswich community and our veterans for helping give a fantastic send off for Mr Fortune. We are still researching Mr Fortunes service history. Thank you to everyone who played a part.
Lest We Forget