It was with great sadness that the members of Comber Silver Band learned of the passing of their former member, Mr George Clegg, on 2nd June 2018. Born on 7th January 1935, George was 83 when he passed away.
When he was old enough George joined the 1st Belfast Boys’ Brigade attached to the Mary Magdalene Church in Donegall Pass, Belfast. A short time later he joined the 1st Old Boys Silver Band which then took its membership mostly from the Boys Brigade Company. In the early days George played a few instruments but settled on the Flugel Horn and on this instrument became very proficient and was arguably one of the best in Northern Ireland.
In his working life George was an Animal Auctioneer selling farm animals all over Northern Ireland and beyond. Was this the reason for George’s husky voice?
George had a Sabbatical from playing for a few years but returned to play with Comber Silver Band. He was very willing to play wherever in the band he was required. 3rd Cornet, then Flugel Horn, Tenor Horn and then Baritone. He showed his proficiency on all of these instruments. Always willing to help the younger members of the band he became affectionately known as “Da” Clegg. As a loyal and dedicated member of the band he served on the Committee. His reasoned thinking and his ability to see both side of an argument were greatly appreciated at meetings.
In his private life George married June (Nee Mills) and they had three children, now all grown up of course. About 13 years ago George and June made the courageous decision to sell up here and move to their beloved Spain. Their new home was just outside Murcia. Whilst there George had a few age related health issues, mainly hips and knees. Despite the pain and hospital stays he never complained and was more concerned with the welfare of his family & friends and of course continued to ask about “His” bands.
Around August / September 2017 George and June decided to return home and it was obvious that George had become quite frail and was only able to walk with the aid of crutches. Sadly this deterioration continued and after a spell in a nursing home he was admitted to the Ulster Hospital Dundonald. He passed away peacefully on 2nd June surrounded by June and his friends.
His funeral took place from St Mark’s Dundela, Belfast on Thursday 7th June 2018 and a small band made up from Comber Silver Band and 1st Old Boys Band gave him the send off he so richly deserved. Our sympathy to June and the entire family circle.
Alan Curry (Friend)