I would like to thank you and your organisation for the flowers and for attending my brother Roger's funeral. He will be missed by many people from all over the country, I will never forget him. I would like you on my behalf to send my deepest regards to all of his friends in the ACWS, some of whom I had met before, but especially to those who made the journey to Long Eaton on a very difficult driving day as the weather on the Thursday night was terrible. Also for the dignified way, with the guard of honour and the piper, which brought a lump to my throat, and to those of my friends who attended.
It was the kind of send off which Roger would have wanted, but it should have been after a few more years.
Again, thank you for all for all your effort.
Hi Comrades and Bereaved Family,
I was much saddened by the passing of "Major Roger Zwarycz" 32nd Virginia Vols Inf A-Coy Wythe Rifles ANV CSA. While being our Oc and Co, myself and many others had the honour and privilege to serve under him. Roger was a friend, Comrade and an inspirational re-enactor. As well as kitting out both of "us" and "Confederate Forces" better than their Commissary did, as "Classic Images".
Always up for a chat, advice or a laugh. His legendry home made wine was probably responsible for a reduction in Confed and Union forces at Roll Call, Strong Stuff hahaha. His like will be sadly missed. Sad but true.
Sleep softly Comrade. Mr Zwarycz, who loved a campfire party, would be most happy for us to raise a glass in his praise.
Snr Pvt Spencer, A B.
I did manage to attend Roger Zwarycz's Funeral as the road and weather conditions were not too bad north of Nottingham. I know several members who had planned to attend but could not due to the adverse conditions.
However, there were still a good number of members (including some former members) as well as members of the 80th Foot Staffordshire Regiment, of which Roger was also a member. I would estimate that there were around 40-50 re-enactors present.
The funeral cars were met at the entrance to the crematorium by soldiers from both North and South and the Staffordshires, and led up the driveway by a lone piper playing Amazing Grace, with the soldiers marching behind with Confederate and Union (UK) flags. As the hearse pulled up to the crematorium building the roadway was lined by a further contingent of Confederate soldiers and all the others in modern dress. Roger's coffin was draped in a Confederate battle flag with his sword and kepi laid on top.
The service was functional but, in my mind, unfortunately failed to capture Roger's spirit and humour. The usual flowers from friends and neighbours were surpassed by those from the ACWS Board on behalf of the members and from Roger's fellow ACWS comrades in the design of a Confederate Battle Flag.
The majority then retired to The Hole in The Wall pub for the wake. Most left after about an hour to make the long journey home. When I left a bit later there were still about a dozen members and ex-members in attendance. There was many a good story told and the ubiquitous photograph albums doing the rounds.
It was the stated desire of the majority present that we should do something more for as many members as possible to be able to say their own goodbyes to Roger, and this is being organised, as I write this, to happen at the Rockingham Castle event in May. Brian Coxon is once again leading on this one, I believe.
Many thanks to Brian Coxon and his "team" for organising the re-enactors and a big thank you to those of you who were able to attend. It was certainly a surprise to Roger's brother to discover how highly regarded and popular Roger was in the re-enacting community.
Mike Bussey, Chairman ACWS.