It was feared that just six people would attend Albert Vaughan’s funeral today in Tamworth, until the manager of the nursing home where he spent his last days made an online appeal drawing global attention from former servicemen.
Today people lined the streets in the small Staffordshire town to see the funeral procession for the former marine who fought in the second world war and received six medals during his 12 years of military service.
Mr Vaughan had outlived all of his children, spending the last two decades of his life living in a care home. Fearing he would be buried without mourners, staff contacted the National Ex-serviceman’s Association.
After the plea was shared on Facebook, tributes poured in from across the world, and today former marines and military veterans travelled to give the coffin a guard of honour as it arrived to St Editha’s church.
During the service Reverend Vic Van Den Bergh said Mr Vaughan’s death was a “wake-up call”, asking how many men like Albert are out there.
“This is the time for us to think about how can we find those who served and pay tribute to them as we do today,” he stated.
Chris Homer, the manager at Marmion NUrsing Home, delivered a eulogy detailing Mr Vaughan’s life and the time he spent at the care home, describing him as a gentlemen who was always gracious and thankful.
Albert’s body was then taken to Sutton Crematorium where a Royal Marines bugler played the last post before the cremation ceremony. A beret and cap badge will be presented to his two grandchildren.