26/03/2018 11:04 BST | Updated 26/03/2018 12:04 BST

Funeral For RAF Veteran With No Family Attended By 100 People After Appeal

‘Just because you stop serving, doesn’t mean you stop belonging.’

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The coffin of Kenneth White, an RAF veteran who died with no known family, is carried into Cambridge City Crematorium 

More than 100 people have attended the funeral of an RAF veteran who died with no known family following a social media appeal.

Kenneth White lived in the St Ives area of Cambridgeshire and was 84 years old when he died at Hinchingbrooke Hospital in December.

After hearing news of his death, a group called Veterans Honoured posted an plea for people to attend his funeral, and launched a Facebook appeal for mourners.

As a result, more than 100 people attended the service at Cambridge Crematorium on Monday, including around a dozen bikers and a coach from RAF Wyton.

Alan Scott, of the St Ives branch of the Royal British Legion, said that very little was known about White, other than basic details that he was born near Barnsley in 1933 and served in the RAF in the 1950s including in Iraq and the Persian Gulf.

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Tributes to the pensioner, who died in December 

Scott said: “We don’t know how he came to be living in this area and we don’t know if he’s always been single or has a family somewhere.

“The hospital at Hinchingbrooke made lots of attempts to find out if he had any family. Unfortunately they haven’t been able to find any.”

Sarah O’Connor, 45, of Cambridge, was among those who attended the service.

She said this was the first funeral of a serviceman that she had attended since the death of her brother Sergeant Bob O’Connor, who died following the loss of a Hercules aircraft over Iraq in 2005.

Her brother was 38 years old at the time of his death, and she decided to wear his military medals to White’s funeral.


“Kenneth was reported as not having a family which is wrong, as he’s got the military family,” she said. “This is bridging the generation, using the platform of social media to still pay respects to somebody who gave so much.

“Just because you stop serving doesn’t mean you stop belonging.”