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Ainslie Gordon: arrangements announced for popular bandsman’s funeral

The arrangements have been announced for the funeral of Ainslie Gordon who died as a result of a road traffic collision in Magherafelt on Tuesday (June 7).

Mr Gordon, who was well-known in band circles, died from injuries sustained in a crash involving a tractor and the motorbike he was riding.

His funeral service will be held at the family home in Coagh on Saturday, June 11 at 1.30pm, followed by a service of committal at Ardtrea Parish Churchyard.

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Family flowers are requested only. Donations in lieu can be made, if desired, to The Gurkha Welfare Trust, payable to D. Watters (Donations A/c), 55 Main Street, Tobermore, Magherafelt, BT45 5PP.

Ainslie Gordon

Members of the band community from across Northern Ireland have spoken of their shock and sadness at hearing of Mr Gordon’s death.

A special mark of respect will be made at a parade in east Belfast on Saturday.

The Regimental Band East Belfast has invited all ex-members, family, friends and supporters to join them in paying their respects to the popular Cookstown man by marching behind the band at the east Belfast Memorial Parade.

A spokesperson for the band said: “I don’t even know how to put this into words.

Aughrim Road, Magherafelt. Picture: Google

“We’ve lost not only a star but a true friend, a dedicated bandsman and one of the best. You’ll be sorely missed by us all.”

A spokesperson for the Sons of William Flute Band, Cookstown, said the news of Mr Gordon’s death was “absolutely devastating”.

“Ainslie was a past member of our band and a dear friend to many of our members.

“He is also an uncle of our esteemed member, Graeme Robinson, and a great uncle to Bobbi.”

“We trust that the family will find comfort in the difficult days, weeks and months ahead.”

The Ulster Bands Forum described the news of the tragedy as “heartbreaking”.

“One of the most decent guys you could ask for, a talented musician and a much loved son, brother, father, band member and friend,” a spokesperson said.

“My heart is breaking for his mum Amy and sister Denise as well as the wider family circle and his colleagues in the band. That great band in the sky has gained one dedicated member and awesome piccolo player.”

Members of the loyal orders and band community from across Northern Ireland and further afield are among the many people who have shared their sympathy with Mr Gordon’s family in online messages.

In a family notice, he is described as “devoted daddy of Ross and Abbie, dearly loved son of Amy and the late Oswald, much loved brother of Dessie, Elaine, Averil, Alastair, Denise and the late Stanley and a dear brother-in-law, uncle and great uncle.”

The tragedy - which happened shortly after 8.30pm on the Aughrim Road - involved a red Massey Ferguson tractor and a black Triumph Daytona motorbike.

Mr Gordon, who was on the motorbike, was taken to hospital but died from his injuries.

Police have appealed to anyone who witnessed the collision, including another motorcyclist seen in the area at the time, or who has dashcam footage which could assist officers with their enquiries to contact the Collision Investigation Unit on 101, quoting reference number 1977 07/06/22.

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