Vernon Coles DSM 1920-2014
Donningon Castle Chapter No.856
The majority, if not all of you, will by now be aware that Ill∴Bro.Vernon Coles, DSM, 32°, was called to the Grand Chapter above on Friday 2nd May, having celebrated his 94th birthday on the 16th April.
Ill∴Bro.Vernon was Perfected into the Albert Victor Chapter No 117 on the 16th June 1975.
In 1979, he became a Founding Member of this the Donnington Castle Chapter No 856. Over the next thirty five years, he was not only a leading light, but probably the most inspiring and inspirational Member this Chapter has known, hardly ever missing a meeting.
On 13th August 1986 he was Enthroned as MWS.
Following the sad loss of Ill∴Bro.Norman Challoner,32°, the Founding Prelate, Ill∴Bro.Vernon took over the Prelates duties, an office he filled with great distinction for a number of years and only retired when he persuaded me to replace him in 2007.
He was promoted by Supreme Council to the 30° on 9th Nov 1987, to the 31° on 20th May 1997 and 32° on 15th March 2011.
He became a Joining Member of the Thames & Chilterns Higher Degrees Chapter No 1075 on 1st Sept 2011.
Those of you who knew Ill∴Bro.Vernon, will fully appreciate it when I say he was one of the most respected men and Freemason you could ever meet. Whilst he enjoyed his Craft Masonry and more of that will be said at another time, this Order was the one dearest to his heart and which gave him the greatest satisfaction. He was always available to offer both encouragement and worldy advice to the younger Members and watch them develop and progress with great pride.
Having lost my dear Father in 1979, just after I was Raised, Ill∴Bro. Vernon became my "Masonic Father". He carefully guided me on my Masonic pathway and whenever I received any promotion or recognition, following Diane my wife, Ill∴Bro.Vernon was the next person I would call to share the news with, as I felt it was as much his reward as mine.
Princes, I could talk about Ill∴Bro.Vernon all day, but he wouldn't thank me for that, as he was an extremely modest man.
Princes, we all think in life, some things are irreplaceable. Let me assure you this is most definitely the case with Ill∴Bro.Vernon, totally irreplaceable.
May he now rest in Eternal Peace as a just reward for his labours of life.