Skeogh Flute Band is to stage a tribute night in memory of the late Ted Carey, a member of the Dromore outfit for fully 87 of his 94 years.
A legend among the bands community, Ted passed away a little over a year ago, on Black Saturday, August 30, 2014.
The band to whom he gave a lifetime of service means to honour his memory with an event in Dromore High School on Friday, October 2.
Skeogh Flute’s Colin Ward said of Ted: “He was born on March 5, 1920 and when he was seven years old his mother was approached by the bandmaster of that time, Mr Ralph Martin; he asked if young Ted would like to play the triangle with the Band on the Twelfth of July that year.
“At first she wasn’t sure, as she was concerned about who would look after him on the day. Ralph assured her that he would be in good hands and he would be brought back safe and sound.
“Ted told me that, sure enough, Ralph and the other men in the band looked after him and fed him with ice-cream and chips all day and brought him back home to a very relieved mother.
“That was the start of a lifelong long career in the band, which unfortunately ended with his sad demise, aged 94, on Saturday, 30 August 2014.”
Though in time occasionally fulfilling the role of drum-major, Ted is most fondly rememberewd as Skeogh Flute Band’s bass drummer.
“He was renowned for his steady beat,” said Colin, “and no matter what other bands Skeogh would have met whilst playing, Ted never missed a beat; due to this attribute he was often fondly referred to as ‘Steady Teddy’.”
Set to get underway at 7.45pm on the night, the planned tribute event will see Skeogh Flute Band play a selection of tunes, in which it will be joined by some its ‘old boys’, eager to take part.
Also taking part will be Rathfriland’s ‘Sticks of Fire’, Kilkeel’s Pride of Ballinran Flute Band and Dunloy Accordion.
Said Colin: “This gesture is greatly appreciated by the members of Skeogh Flute Band and their thanks and gratitude is extended to these fantastic artistes, who, despite being in big demand, kindly agreed to take part in this event because of the fact that it was honouring this legend of the band fraternity in Northern Ireland and beyond.
“There will also be a presentation of a new bass drum, in memory of Ted, by his family, and representatives of the Macmillan Nurses will be in attendance to inform the audience of the work they do for those suffering from cancer.”
While entry to the event is free, in recognition of the care Ted received from its nurses, collection tins and buckets will be placed in the hall to allow donations in aid of Macmillan.
Restricted to a maximum of 350, free tickets are available from band members or by contacting Paul on 077 6340 1415 or Colin on 077 4294 9094.
“The Band would ask those who take tickets to use them rather than not turn up on the night,” said Colin.