Mr Archie Whitehead
A MAN who gave years of service to Shanklin Rotary Club, Archie Whitehead, died peacefully on Sunday, surrounded by close family.
Mr Whitehead was born on January 3, 1920, in West Bromwich, and when he was a few months old the family moved to Deal in Kent.
He went to various schools in the area, was a keen footballer, playing for his school and was selected to represent the Rest against the England School Boys team.
When he left school, he was apprenticed to a bakery, opposite a car sales showroom and garage. When he completed his apprenticeship, he decided there was more money in selling cars than in baking, so he joined the staff as a salesman at the car showroom.
At the age of 19, he joined the RAF as a fitter mechanic, working on many aircraft, and was among some of the first people to see the first Rolls Royce jet engine in production.
He married Vee on December 26, 1941, in Chingford, Essex. They had a son and daughter, David and Andrea, who both live abroad, four grandchildren and one great grandchild.
Vee died about ten years ago.
On leaving the RAF, Mr Whitehead took up a position with an insurance company, working he way up to become a claims assessor, travelling all over the country.
On moving to the Island in 1966, he bought the Avon Court Hotel, in Shanklin, which he ran until his retirement.
He joined Shanklin Rotary Club in 1968, became club president in 1980/1 and was further honoured with a Paul Harris Fellow award in 2002/3, the highest Rotary award. He became an expert furniture sales person with a keen eye in the renowned Shanklin Rotary Club’s grand annual sales.
Mr Whitehead’s funeral is on Friday June 8, at 3pm at the IW Crematorium. Family flowers only. Donations to Rotary International and/or the stroke unit at St Mary’s Hospital.
• Family announcements are at http://www.iwcp.co.uk/search/familyannouncements.aspx This week's announcements will be online by 4pm today (Friday)