Fitting funeral for fallen soldier

A FITTING tribute for a hero.As schoolchildren, comrades and friends and family line the streets a lone bagpiper will play a lament as hundreds gather to pay their respects to fallen Ipswich soldier Aaron McClure.

A FITTING tribute for a hero.

As schoolchildren, comrades and friends and family line the streets a lone bagpiper will play a lament as hundreds gather to pay their respects to fallen Ipswich soldier Aaron McClure.

Today the family of 19-year-old Private McClure, who died in a friendly fire incident in Afghanistan have vowed to give him the best send off ever at his funeral next week.

A gun salute will sound as his coffin, draped in the Union flag, arrives at St Thomas Church in Bramford Lane, Ipswich at midday next Tuesday.


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The route to the church from his Marlow Road home will be lined with pupils from his former school, Westbourne High as a bagpiper leads his journey.

More than 70 personnel from the army will also be at the church and Pte McClure's family have said the military funeral will be open to anyone who wants to go.

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His uncle, Allan McClure, of Roundwood Road, said: “We are having an open service so as many people can be there as possible.

“Anyone who wishes to pay their respects, can come along and not feel bad. We are going to get a speaker system set up so everyone can hear what's going on.”

Following the service, two police escorts will lead the hearse and funeral cars to Silent Street, arriving at about 1.15pm. The bagpiper will then lead a procession through the town centre, past Dogs Head Street, and up to Great Colman Street. Some of the roads will be closed while the procession is taking place.

From there, the family will head to the Millennium Cemetery, in Tuddenham Road, for a private burial.

Mr McClure added: “We want to say thanks to the Evening Star and to all those who have posted messages on the website. We also want to thank those who have left flowers, and been there for us at this difficult time. We want to celebrate Aaron's life and give him a right good send-off.”

It has been requested to have family only flowers but anyone is welcome to make a donation to the Army Dependants' Trust.

An inquest into his death was open and adjourned at the coroners in Warwickshire yesterday and will be reviewed at a later date.

A spokeswoman for funeral directors Michael Smy said Pte McClure's body is due to arrive in Ipswich today.

An online book of condolences has been set up in memory of Private Aaron McClure at www.eveningstar.co.uk. Alternatively, you can send an e-mail to starnews@eveningstar.co.uk, or call The Evening Star newsdesk on 01473 324788 or write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN, or e-mail eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk.

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