Good Bye, Good Friend!
David C. Hamilton, Founding Member of the Red Knights International Firefighters Motorcycle Club, 10,000 with 10,000 members worldwide, passed away December 29, 2015 due to heart complications. He served as the First International President and First President of Massachusetts 1.
He leaves his wife, Jacqueline and two sons, Timothy and Kevin.
A 28 year member of the Boylston Fire Department, he retired as a Lieutenant. He was a founding father of Straw Hollow Engine Works and a collector of antique tractors.
Visiting hours will be Saturday, January 2, 2016 from 12 to 4 pm in Hays Funeral Home, 56 Main Street, Northborough. The Red Knights will do a walk through at 2:00 pm
David’s funeral will take place on Sunday, January 3, 2016 in the funeral home.
Burial will take place privately. In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to www.shinershospitalforchildren.org/Donate.
Celebrating the Life of the Founding Father Dave Hamilton
On Saturday, January 2, 2016, MA 1 began the process of celebrating the life of Founding Father Dave Hamilton, who died December 29, 2015, after a brief period dealing with heart problems.
His calling hours were very well attended. Founding Fathers Wright, Wentzell, Tripp, Parker, Hunt, Bourassa and Beausoleil were present to wish the family well. Every Massachusetts chapter was represented, along with representatives from New Hampshire, Vermont, New York, New Jersey, Maryland, Ohio and Pennsylvania. If I missed any, I am sorry, I didn't see everyone.
The International Board was represented by President Gadway, Secretary Snodgrass and Region 1 Director Mattera.
All together there were close to 100 Red Knights (if not more) that passed through the home to pay their respects. Firefighters from the area and many personal friends passed through as well. Dave's wife Jackie and his sons Kevin and Tim were overwhelmed with the support of the community, but mostly with his motorcycling family!
On Sunday, January 3, 2016, Dave's funeral service was held at the funeral home. After readings from the MA 1 Chaplain, the President's flag and coin presentation was completed. President Gadway presented an RKMC flag to Dave's wife Jackie. Secretary/Chaplain Snodgrass present an Angel Dime to Jackie, Kevin and Tim. There wasn't a dry eye in the house.
At approximately 13:45, a procession began from the funeral home in Northborough, MA, to the RKMC Memorial in Boylston, MA. The procession was led by Boylston FD Engine 1, followed by Dave's hearse. Seven motorcyclists that braved the near freezing temperatures were immediately behind, followed by all others.
An absolutely wonderful service was held at the Memorial - pictures have already been posted - complete with the release of balloons by Dave's grandchildren, a bag piper, a reading of the Fire Officer's Prayer and the ringing of Dave's last alarm, 4 rounds of Box 2.
For the Red Knights, this is a great loss, as Dave is the third of the eleven Founding Fathers to have now passed on. He joins Bob Goulet and Colin Mackey in the great ride in the sky. Dave was the very first president of the red knights, and the first International President as well. Of the eight remaining Founders, seven were present at his calling hours and six acted as pall bearers, along with MA 1 president Peter Stone and his son John.
A coalation was held in the Boylston Townhouse adjacent to the Memorial. Food and drinks were served. Memories and stories were shared, and the love for Dave was felt throughout the weekend.
We would like to thank all those that attended and participated in the weekend's events. We would like to thank all those that expressed kind words, thoughts and prayers both in person and through Facebook and other social media. Dave's family was truly pleased and grateful for all that was said and done on Dave's behalf, and so is MA 1. Without Dave there may have been no Red Knights, but, in a way, conversely, without all of you thee would be no Red Knights..
So, from Where It All Began, and from those of us still here, we ask and pray that you all help carry on Dave's legacy and help continue the growth of this wonderful organization. As we remain Red Knights Forever remember, most of all, to remain -
Loyal to our Duty