Memorial Service for Sir Rex Hunt 11 June 2013
A Service of Thanksgiving for the life of Sir Rex Masterman Hunt, CMG (29 June 1926 – 11 November 2012) HM Governor of the Falkland Islands at the time of the 1982 conflict with Argentina, took place at St Clement Danes, the Central Church of the Royal Air Force, Strand, London on Tuesday 11 June 2013 at 2.30pm.
The service opened with a fanfare played by a trumpeter from the Band of the Royal Air Force as the clergy procession entered the church. The choir then sang the anthem 'I was glad' by Sir Hubert Parry before the bidding payer by the Resident Chaplain, Reverend David Osborn. The first hymn was 'Tell out, my soul, the greatness of the Lord!' during which Sir Rex's medals and awards were taken up to the altar by his son, Tony.
The lesson from Chapter 15 of St John's Gospel verses 9 to 17 was read by Mr. Colin Wright, Hon Secretary of the Falkland Islands Association and the poem 'High Flight' by John Gillespie Magee was read by Tammy Thurman, grand-daughter to Sir Rex. The choir then sang 'The Lord's my Shepherd (Psalm 23) before the tribute was given by Mr. David Tatham, CMG, a former Governor of the Falkland Islands and a Vice-President of the Falkland Islands Association (click here to read the full tribute).
Mr Alan Huckle, a former Governor of the Falkland Islands and Chairman of the Falkland Islands Association, read a letter from the The Rt Hon William Hague MP, First Secretary of State, Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs (click here to read the letter).
Next came the hymn 'He who would valiant be' which was followed by a tribute by Mr John Weightman, cousin to Sir Rex, on behalf of the family.
The sermon was given by The Venerable (Air Vice-Marshal) R J Pentland, Chaplain-in-Chief & Archdeacon for the Royal Air Force and this was followed by prayers led by the Reverend David Osborn.
After the Commendation the choir sang 'God be in my head' by Walford-Davies and then, following another fanfare, the congregation sang 'Praise, my soul, the King of Heaven' The Chaplain in Chief then gave the Blessing and as the clergy processed out the familiar voice of Louis Armstrong rang out singing 'On Blueberry Hill' a great favourite with Sir Rex.
Almost 200 people were in church some of whom had fought in the 1982 conflict also former diplomats who had known the Hunt's in Uganda and other overseas postings together with a number of former Governors of the Falkland Islands. Several Members of Parliament from both the House of Commons and the House of Lords attended. Representatives came from the RAF, RAF Charities, SAMA82 and the Falkland Families Association together with other friends and members of the FIA, Falkland Islanders and Falkland students studying in the UK.
After the service many went on to a reception in The Betjeman Room at The Charing Cross Hotel where a condolences book, which had been started in the Falkland Islands, was available for those present to add their comments.
The signed letter from the Foreign Secretary, which had been read out at the service, was handed to Lady Hunt together with the Condolences Book.