Beloved Corby firefighter Hilmi Say to receive Fire Service Guard of Honour at funeral

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Hilmi sadly passed away last month

Northamptonshire Fire and Rescue Service will be paying tribute to the life of Corby firefighter Hilmi Say at his funeral on January 24.

Hilmi was a much-loved member of the brigade since he joined in 2010, where he had served at Corby Fire Station ever since.

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He was diagnosed with cancer in January 2022 and had been fighting it since but passed away aged 40 on the morning of December 23, surrounded by his family.

Hilmi SayHilmi Say
Hilmi Say

In the period since, the fire service has been supporting Hilmi’s wife, Victoria, and his children Brooke, 14, and Sophia, 11.

With the blessing of Hilmi’s family, the fire service has confirmed the details of his funeral arrangements and encourage anyone who knew Hilmi to come along and celebrate his life.

The funeral service will be held on Wednesday, January 24, at 11am at Rothwell Holy Trinity Parish Church, but prior to this a funeral procession will leave from Corby Fire Station at 10am.

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He will be carried by a turntable ladder truck and flanked by two fire engines and funeral cars in a route starting at the station and heading through Corby town centre.

On arrival at the church in Rothwell, he will be carried through a Fire Service Guard of Honour.

Following that, a burial service will take place back in Corby at Shire Lodge Cemetery, followed by a wake at the neighbouring Best Western Rockingham Forest Hotel.

Those who are attending the services are being encouraged to wear their best black outfits, but operational firefighters will be attending in their full firefighter kit to help form the Guard of Honour.

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Hilmi’s wife, Victoria Say, said: “As a serving firefighter and all-round amazing human, we will be giving Hilmi the send-off he deserves. This will be a very special day for the most incredible man.”

Northamptonshire Fire and Rescue Service’s acting chief fire officer, Simon Tuhill, said: “The loss of Hilmi has been absolutely devastating for the service, and since then we have tried our best to support not just Hilmi’s immediate family and friends, but also our own staff who have been so deeply affected by this.

“Hilmi joined us in 2010 after finishing his training and had served at Corby Fire Station ever since, and in that time, he had become a hugely popular and well-respected figure within the Service.

“When Hilmi was diagnosed, he continued to diligently carry out his duties for as long as he could.

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“Those who know him well knew how proud he was to be a firefighter and to serve the local community, and therefore it is only fitting that the service plays a big part in giving him the send-off that he deserves.”

Further details on the funeral arrangements are as follows:

Funeral timings:

10am – Funeral procession leaves Corby Station and through the following route: Lloyds Road, The Jamb, High Street (Old Village), Cottingham Road (towards Corby town centre), George Street (town centre), Jubilee Avenue, Beanfield Avenue, onto Rothwell.

11am – Funeral service begins at Rothwell Holy Trinity Parish Church

1pm – Burial service begins at Shire Lodge Cemetery, Corby

1.30pm – Wake begins at the Best Western Rockingham Forest Hotel, Corby

Further details:

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For those who wish to attend the funeral, do not come to the Fire Station at 10am, but head straight to Rothwell early to park and head to the church. Please do not follow the funeral procession through Corby in your car.

Once the funeral service is over, please head straight to Shire Lodge Cemetery and use the car parks at the Best Western and Corby Town Football Club. Please do not park at the cemetery unless it is in a designated parking area.

For those not attending the funeral service but who wish to pay tribute, please come along if you can and wave Hilmi off anywhere along the procession route in Corby prior to the funeral service, between 10am and 11am.

Everyone is also welcome at either the burial service or the wake at the Best Western.