Eddie Hendle - A Tribute
by Federation Trustee Tony Patrick
It is my sad duty to inform that Eddie Hendle passed away on the 23rd March following period of illness.
Eddie was a long serving, highly respected and much loved member of the marching band and drum corps community and was involved in the very early days of both the British Youth Band Association and Drum Corps United Kingdom and served both organisations as a council member, board member, educator and judge at all levels. He was an inspiration to many marching members as well as to a generation of instructors and judges.
Early in his life, Ed played cornet for the Salvation Army but as his talent and ability were noticed, he was invited to play with a number of brass bands and was an accomplished solo player.
His entry into youth marching bands came with Thurrock Marching Brass and he was pivotal in achieving their Wembley Championship titles through his experience and attention to detail and TMB will be remembered for their musical sound and excellent musicianship which Ed and his brother Pete instilled into their players.
In 1983, Eddie accompanied Dagenham Crusaders on their DCI trip and through his friendship with John Johnson, continued to develop the idea of taking a British unit to DCI. In 1988 they both realised their vision and Ed was assistant corps director for the British Crusaders, though unfortunately missed the trip through ill health.
He was always ready to assist with bands and corps shows or rehearsals and over the years travelled the country imparting his unique style of instruction and generally making people feel good about what they were doing. He also ran and participated in many educational events for every aspect of the activity, and anyone who was taught by him will remember a warm, friendly and genuine person who cared about what he was doing, with a personality that crossed any generation gaps. He was a major force behind the BYBA Festival of Fun and Music and believed in the value that the event brought to the activity.
He was an internationally recognised judge and his expertise was sought throughout Europe. He was pivotal in forming the DCUK judges association and actively worked for the recruitment, training and standardisation of judges for the UK activity in general.
Eddie leaves his wife Joan and son Kevin and I am sure that you will all join in offering your condolences to them at this sad time. He loved his family and was a doting grandad who always enjoyed being surrounded by his family and friends.
He will be sadly missed by so many people from both the marching activity and the world in general. My personal memories are of a friendly, happy, helpful and passionate man who had the utmost integrity, an inexhaustible willingness to help anyone, and a love for an activity that will always remember his legacy. I will miss him terribly.
Rest in peace Eddie.