Armistice Day call for mourners to attend Resident’s funeral

armistice day

Armistice Day call for mourners to attend funeral of former resident & ex-army man at Vane Hill ARBD Home with no family


Private Alan Smith was a resident at Vane Hill since 1999. He was an ex- 4th Battalion the Queens Regt Veteran. Throughout his 16 years at Vane Hill, he never received visits from friends and family.
Although a very quiet man, he enjoyed the activities and trips out with the other residents, and was making great progress until he started to experience swallowing difficulties 4 weeks ago.  He was admitted to Torbay Hospital with oesophageal cancer.
Alan was in hospital for only 4 days until he sadly passed away aged 66, in the early hours of Monday 28th October. The day before he passed, Vane Hill staff stayed in the hospital with him, he will be sadly missed and will now join the ranks of the fallen Veterans.

Vane Hill have arranged his funeral on this day, November 11th, Armistice Day at Torquay Crematorium at 1.30pm.

A facebook appeal for mourners, particularly from the forces, is spreading quickly!

Kath Little wrote on the British Tri-Services site: “I am very much saddened to inform you of the passing of – Pte Alan Lesley Smith, ex 4th Battalion, Queens Regt. Alan died on 28 October having spent the last few years being cared for at the Vane Hill Specialist Care Home in Torquay.

“It would appear that he had no family and so the home would be delighted if any member of the regiment could attend the funeral which is taking place at Torquay Crematorium at 13.30 on 11 November. His coffin will be draped with the regimental flag and the Last Post will be played and the Regimental Collect said.

“If you are in the area and can attend it would be very much appreciated.” [Comments taken from the Torquay Herald Express]

3 ex Veteran motorcyclists will be escorting Alan from Babbacombe to Torquay Crematorium. Vane Hill Residents and Staff will be in attendance together with Veterans responding to the facebook and Herald Express appeal.

Private Alan Smith’s funeral will begin with the Regimental March. The Hymn ‘I vow to thee my country’ will play during the service. ‘The Last Post’ by Bugle from the Royal Signal Regiment (Ex-4th Queen’s Regiment) will be played at the end of Alan’s funeral service and the Regimental March when leaving the Crematorium.

Steve Todd, Manager at Vane Hill, said: “We are overwhelmed by the response of our Facebook appeal to mourners for Alan’s funeral. Throughout his 16 years with us, he did not have friends and family to visit him, so to have this attendance at his Funeral today on Armistice Day is wonderful and Alan will have a send off that he deserves”


Alan SmithAdele Atkins, Staff at Vane Hill ARBD Home, wrote this post on her Facebook Page

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