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Author Topic: Mr Charles George Link 1864-1916  (Read 3856 times)

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The Late Captain C G Link
« Reply #2 on: April 03, 2013, 00:49:49 »
Imposing Fireman’s Funeral at Strood

The Rochester and Gillingham News, 26th February 1916

The funeral of the late Mr Charles George Link, acting Captain of the City of Rochester Volunteer Fire Brigade, whose sudden death was recorded in the “News” on Friday, took place on Monday, at Strood, and was made the occasion of a remarkable demonstration of sympathy and respect by the inhabitants of the district. The unexpected death of Mr Link, so well-known and admired in the neighbourhood, had made a deep impression upon the people, and they assembled in their thousands to pay homage to their deceased fellow townsman and to witness the passing of his remains to their last resting place. The dead Captain was paid all the honours due to him as a fireman. Chief Officer C D Levy and his devoted comrades of the Rochester Brigade saw to the removal of the remains. Six of them – Fireman Record Hoar, Willmott, Brooks, Acton and Gowers – bore the handsome coffin of polished oak with the deceased officer’s helmet and axe almost hidden by flowers, resting upon the lid, from the house to the church across the road. They transferred it at the close of the service to the old Rochester fire manual, upon which the late Captain Link had many a time ridden in excited haste to a country fire, and then having reverently enveloped it in the Union Jack, joined the rest of their colleagues in guarding it as it was drawn by a team of jet black horses to the cemetery, where they again removed and lowered it sorrowfully to the grave. It was a touching scene, these sturdy firemen performing the last sad office for their departed leader, and it brought tears to the eyes of many in the huge assemblage. In addition to the Rochester Firemen, the Chatham and Gillingham Brigades were also present in full force under their respective chiefs, Captain J. Parker and Captain J. Plewis; then there were representatives from other Brigades in the County, including Captain Hedley Peters, Sittingbourne, Hon Secretary to the South Eastern District National Fire Brigades Union, Captain Beadle, Halling, and Captain A. Witherden, Cliffe-at-Hoo. The majority of the Rochester Police Force, including the Chief Constable (Mr. A. S. Arnold), Chief Inspector J. Brooks, Inspectors Wellard and Farrow, Sergeants Cox and Ransley and a number of the special constables, who headed the procession to the cemetery, also took part, and there were further representative detachments of the Royal Army Medical Corps under Captain G. A. Skinner from Fort Pitt, and of the Rochester Volunteer Training Corps under Captain J W. Nash. These, in the march to the cemetery, all preceeded the coffin, the majority of the firemen carrying wreaths. The mourners came after in carriages. These included Sergeant George Link of the Mechanical Transport, the only son, who arrived home on special leave from France in time for the funeral. Mr. W. Ballard, Mr. A. Cowell, Lieut. A. E. Williams, Mr. A. Edmonds, Mr. A. Phipps, and Mr. H. E. Moss, brothers-in-law; Sergt. C. E. Williams, RAMC, Messrs. G. Cowell, W. Howie, E. Skilton, J. Horsham and F. Adams, nephews; Messrs. J. and C. Link, uncles; Messrs. J. Batt, T. Kedwell and W. Hayes, cousins; Mr. H. Littlewood, Mr. A. S. Arnold, Messrs. H. Smetham, T. Clibbon, W. Edmonds, G. Wise, W. H. Sawyer, H. Ayers and V. Brooks. The employees of the firm of Messrs. G. Link and Son, and from Grange Farm were also in carriages in the procession.

As already intimated, the first portion of the service was conducted in the Parish Church, where with the mourners were the widow and ot.her lady relatives. Among the crowded congregation too were the nurses of the Strood V.A.D Hospital, members of the Strood Parish Trustees, the Committee of the Hospital, and of the Strood Conservative Club, as well as members of other bodies with which the late Mr Link was actively associated. In the assembly were Alderman J. Elvey J.P., Councillor W. H. Rowland, the Rev. J. H. Drew, Supt. A. E. Rhodes of the Rochester Division Kent County Constabulary, Messrs. J. J. Eckert, L. Dale, T. C. Holliday, H. Palmert, G. E. Onslow, J. S. Hitch, W. J. Acworth, E. C. Turner, A. G. Smith, H. G. Couchman, C. Harvey, C. A. Woollett, G. Johnson, R. B. Leworthy, S. Sills, A. D. Littlewood, A. J. Curling, W. Paine, F. Wright, H. Tutt, J. Jeffery, J. D. Williams, F. Bourne, W. D. Waterer, H. T. Goodall, H. Frost, H. Ayers, C. F. Ashton, T. Crockford, Blake, Hill, E. Todman, C. Kenworthy, H. Hookins and others.

The choir, in which the late Mr Link had sung from his early youth to the time of his death, lined the entrance to the church, and followed later to the chancel, the Vicar (the Rev J P David) proceeding and pronouncing the opening sentences of the Service for the Burial of the Dead. Psalm 90 was chanted, and the hymns, “Rock of Ages” and “Now the Labourer’s Task is O’er” were sung with impressive effect. As the body was later borne from the church, the choir and congregation chanted the Nune Dimittis and finally the organist played the Dead March in Saul.

So dense was the crowd outside that all traffic had to be suspended as the procession left the church on its way to the cemetery, with the Strood V.A.D Ambulance in the rear. Many of those who had been at the church accompanied the cortege to the place of burial, where there was already a large assembly. The Vicar again officiated at the graveside and never were words spoken with greater force that those offered as the coffin was lowered to earth. “In the midst of life we are in death” was never more truly realized than now, when the thought passed through the minds of those present of hoe this fine, stalwart, handsome figure had been “cut down like a flower” in the fullness of life. The young khaki-clad son, recalled from the war, under circumstances so sad, was an object for the greatest pity, as he stood sorrow-stricken by the open grave. The service ended, the mourners took one last look at the coffin soon now to be covered by mother earth, and left to return to the house. The crowd also soon after dispersed, although many lingered long to inspect the very large collection of beautiful wreaths.


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Mr Charles George Link 1864-1916
« Reply #1 on: March 31, 2013, 13:24:10 »
The Rochester and Gillingham News, Saturday 19th February 1916
Intense regret has been caused in Strood, and indeed throughout the district, at the sudden death on Tuesday, of Mr Charles George Link, deputy chief of the City of Rochester Volunteer Fire Brigade. Up till Tuesday morning Mr Link was apparently in the enjoyment of the best of health. In the afternoon, however, he was seized with what was regarded by his friends as a bilious attack, but in the middle of the night he showed signs of apoplexy, became comatose and ceased breathing at about four o'clock on Wednesday morning. His medical adviser, Dr F Cowan, had been summoned on the first serious symptoms appearing, but was unfortunately unable to do anything to prolong the life of the patient. Mr Link, who was 52 years of age, was on Monday assisting as a member of the local Ambulance Corps in the removal of wounded soldiers who had arrived in a  convoy from France. He was then apparently in the possession of full health and vigour, and his terribly sudden end has come as a great shock to his friends. much sympathy is expressed for the widow and his only son, who is at present serving as a Sergeant in the Mechanical Transport, in France, as well as for his aged mother.
The late Mr Link was in his earlier life a pupil teacher, and subsequently an assistant master at the Strood St Nicholas Boys' School. He married a daughter of the late Mr Samuel Ballard, to whose business in High Street, he and his father, the late Mr George Link, ultimately succeeded. Under his energetic management the business had grrown to its present considerable dimensions, greengrocery, market gardening, coat and cartage contracting, and butchery being included in its various departments. In spite of the claims which his extensive business made upon his time, Mr Link had been able for a period of over twenty years to render inestimable service to the City as a member of the Rochester Volunteer Fire Brigade. He was indeed one of the keenest of that body, and some two of three years since was appointed First Lieutenant, and only a couple of months ago was further advanced to the position of Acting Captain. Since the war broke out, the Fire Brigade had become an important unit of the local ambulance service, and here again the late Mr Link was foremost in interest and activity. His death may, in fact, be attributed as being to a large extent due to the war, for in addition to his various activities in the volunteer service, he had latterly experienced endless worries in his business, through the enlistment of his son and assistants. He was, however, a patriot to the core, and had again and again argued that it was the duty of every man, calling himself an Englishman, even to the sacrifice of his all, to do his utmost to assist in the successful prosecution of the War. Mr Link had also been for many years a member of the Strood Parish Trustees.
It is somewhat singular coincidence that the father of the late Mr Link died under exactly similar circumstances some few years ago.
The late Mr Link had been from his boyhood up to the time of his death a member of the Strood Parish Church Choir.
A trustee under the will of the late Mr S Ballard, Mr Link had taken an active part in the management of the business at Grange Farm.
The sad news was wired to France to Mr Link's son and brother, Corporal-Major R J Link, on Wednesday, and it is hoped that both will be able to obtain leave to return for the funeral, which has been fixed for Monday next. The first portion of the service will take place at Strood Parish Church at half-past two.


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