Rtn. George Armstrong

Fri, Jul 20th 2012 at 12:00 am - 2:00 am

This page is in memory of Rtn George Armstrong a founder member and Past President of the Rotary Club of Heslton-Lizard.


The Rotary Club of Helston-Lizard has been pleased to assist Paul Armstrong to erect a bench in Lowertown in memory of his father George Armstrong, a member and Past President of the Rotary Club.

Photographs show preparations for the concrete base on 26 October 2013 followed by the dedication on 19 January 2014

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Tony Smart's Eulogy at the funeral of Rotarian George Armstrong a founder member and Past President of the Rotary Club of Heslton-Lizard, who passed away on 7 July 2012 aged 69 follows.

ROTARIAN GEORGE ARMSTRONG

I FEEL VERY HUMBLED, YET VERY PRIVILIGED TO HAVE BEEN ASKED BY GEORGE`S FAMILY TO BRING TO TODAY A REFLECTION OF GEORGE – SO FONDLY REMEMBER BY SO MANY WHO KNEW HIM.

I MET GEORGE OVER 40 YEARS AGO.

OUR PATHS CROSSED MANY TIMES THROUGHOUT OUR NAVAL CAREERS, DURING WHICH TIME WE BECAME FIRM FRIENDS. 

WE WERE ALWAYS THERE FOR EACH OTHER, THROUGH THE GOOD TIMES AND BAD, NEVER THE LESS, SHARING MANY A LAUGH ALONG THE WAY.

GEORGE STARTED HIS NAVAL CAREER BY WALKING IN THE DOOR MARKED SAILOR.

HE TRAINED AS AN AIRCRAFT FITTER, THEN QUALIFIED AS RATING AIRCREWMAN.

AFTER SPENDING CONSIDERABLE TIME IN THE BACK OF, WHAT WERE THEN NOTORIOUSLY UNRELIABLE HELICOPTORS – TWICE DITCHING, BUT SURVIVING, HE ROSE ABOVE UNFOUNDED COMMENTS FROM A DIVISIONAL OFFICER WHO MADE A NOTATION THAT GEORGE`S NAVIGATIONAL SKILLS WOULD NOT ENABLE HIM TO FIND HIS WAY OUT OF THE AIRCRAFT HANGER -  GEORGE DECIDED, LIKE MANY RATINGS, MYSELF INCLUDED, THAT THE ONLY WAY TO REALLY ENJOY SAILING ON THE GREY FUNNEL LINE WAS TO ACHIEVE PROMOTION TO THE DIZZY HEIGHT OF SUB LIEUTENANT.

RAPID PROMOTION FROM SUB LT – TO LT – THEN TO LT CDR REFLECTED GEORGE`S TOTAL COMMITMENT TO THE CHALLANGES PRESENTED IN THE APPOINTMENTS HE HELD – HIS ABILITY TO APPLY HIMSELF AND GAIN THE RESPECT OF THOSE HE SERVED – BUT MOST IMPORTANTLY THOSE WHO FORMED PART OF HIS TEAM.

HERE ARE JUST A FEW OF THE STORIES AND ENDEARMENTS THAT ARE A REFLECTION OF GEORGE THE MAN, HIS SENSE OF HUMOUR AND COMPASSION TOWARD HIS FELLOWS.

ERIC EDWARDS – RETIRED LT CDR – NOW LIVING IN FRANCE SAYS:

 “I GOT TO SEE GEORGE BACK IN APRIL. I ONLY HEARD THAT HE WAS ILL COURTESY OF THE “WRINKLIES” GRAPEVINE. I INVITED EVERYONE ALONG TO THE”BEEHIVE PUB” AND PLANNED TO VISIT GEORGE SEPARATELY AT HOME BECAUSE JENNY DIDN`T THINK HE WAS STRONG ENOUGH TO GET OVER TO HELSTON.

 IN TRUE GEORGE FASHION HOWEVER, HE GOT TO THE BEEHIVE UNDER HIS OWN STEAM. HE DID LOOK FRAIL, BUT SAID HE WAS GETTING STRONGER AND FEELING BETTER.

WHILST ERIC WAS SERVING AS 2 I/C AT THE SCHOOL OF A/C HANDLING AT CULDROSE HE  WAS DREADING THE ARRIVIAL OF THE NEW BOSS, BUT NEEDN`T HAVE WORRIED. GEORGE`S ARRIVIAL HERALDED AN ADVENT OF CALM AND SERIOUS CHANGE FOR THE BETTER.

 HIS QUIET AND GENTLY PERSUASIVE MANNER AND OBVIOUS HUMANITY WON EVERONE OVER AND AFTER A FEW WEEKS THE WHOLE STAFF WERE EATING OUT OF HIS HAND.

IN THE MID 1980`S – GEORGE HAD THE DUBIOUS PLEASURE OF BEING SENT TO THE FALKLANDS, TASKED ALONSIDE THE ARMY AND RAF STAFF TO REGROUP AND PLAN FOR THE FUTURE SECURITY OF THE ISLANDERS.

NOT MUCH GOES ON THAT FAR SOUTH IN THE WINTER.

DURING ONE STAFF MEETING – THE QUESTION WAS RAISED – HOW DO WE HELP TO BREAK THE MUNDANE ROUTINE FOR THE TROOPS?

GEORGE – MAYBE FORGETTING THAT THE ARMY AND RAF DON`T SHARE THE FINE TUNED SAILORS SENSE OF HUMOUR VENTURED THE IDEA OF A PENGUIN THROWING COMPETITION.

THE IDEA FELL ON STONY GROUND – BUT DID LIGHTEN THE MOOD!

GEORGE WAS ONE OF THE ORIGINAL TEAM WHO FORMED THE ROTARY CLUB OF HELSTON-LIZARD IN 1987. IN TURN, GEORGE SERVED AS CLUB PRESIDENT, DURING WHICH TIME THE CLUB WENT THROUGH A PERIOD OF UPHEAVAL HAVING TO RELOCATE THE VENUE TWICE IN 12 MONTHS.

AS EVER, GEORGE GUIDED THE CLUB THROUGH THAT PERIOD WITH CALM DIRECTION.

GEORGE`S CONTRIBUTION TO THE CLUB AND ROTARY CONTINUED WHEN IN YEAR 2000 – SHELTERBOX WAS BORN.

WORKING ALONSIDE TOM HENDERSON AND MYSELF – GEORGE MANAGED THE FINANCES, PLANNED AND MANAGED THE BUILDING DEVELOPMENT AND ENSURED THE ROYAL VISIT OF CAMILLA – SHELTERBOX PATRON – WENT AHEAD WITHOUT A HITCH.

WHEN HE FINALLY RETIRED, GEORGE CONTINUED HIS LOVE OF FISHING.

HE HAD HONED HIS SKILLS WHILST LIVING IN BARBADOS – NEWS OF GOERGE FISHING THE FALMOUTH BAY WORRIED THE LOCAL TRAWLERMEN – WHO ONLY RELAXED AFTER JENNY WITNESSED THE PLIGHT OF THE LONELY MACKERAL FLAPPING IN BOTTOM OF A BUCKET AND DECREED – NO MORE FISHING ON MY WATCH!!!

EQUAL TO THE COST OF THE BOAT, GEORGE CONCLUDED HIS ONE AND ONLY MACKERAL WAS THE MOST EXPENSIVE EVER LANDED IN FALMOUTH BAY.

FINALLY, I THINK I SPEAK FOR ALL WHEN I SAY,

“THE WORLD IS A DARKER PLACE WITHOUT GEORGE”.

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