Soldiers honoured for heroism

ROYAL Anglian soldiers were today honoured for their heroism while serving in Afghanistan.Six soldiers were awarded the Military Cross and five others were mentioned in despatches after the regiment's return from fighting the Taliban in the war-torn Middle Eastern nation.

ROYAL Anglian soldiers were today honoured for their heroism while serving in Afghanistan.

Six soldiers were awarded the Military Cross and five others were mentioned in despatches after the regiment's return from fighting the Taliban in the war-torn Middle Eastern nation.

And an Apache helicopter pilot, based at Wattisham, was awarded the Queens' Commendation for Valuable Service.

Captain Adam Hare, 30, of 3 Regiment Army Air Corps, who flew for nearly 300 hours, was praised for his “energy, enthusiasm and commitment”

The Eton-educated pilot, now Adjutant of 3 Regt AAC, said: “I'm obviously very proud for the personal recognition but it must never be forgotten that everybody was working as hard as each other.

“It gives a great boost to morale to hear that an incident that you've just supported could have had a significantly more serious consequence if air support hadn't been made available.”

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The Royal Anglians, nicknamed the Vikings, took the fight to the enemy in more than 350 actions in Helmand Province.

Lieutenant-Colonel Stuart Carver, commanding officer of the 1st Battaltion, was awarded the Distinguished Service Order for his exemplary leadership.

The Anglians mentioned in dispatches were former Stradbroke School pupil, Sergeant Iain Panter, from Harleston, in Norfolk, Sergeant Steven Armon, from Cambridge, Warrant Officer Kevin Main, Major Philip John Messenger, Sgt Major Tim Newton, from Norwich, and Major Philip Blanchfield, from Fakenham.

The Military Cross was awarded to Lance Corporal Levi Ashby, 21, Corporal Billy Moore, 31, Lance Corporal Oliver Ruecker, Major Dom Biddick MBE, Major Mick Aston and Captain David Hicks, killed in action, 26.

Nine Royal Anglian soldiers died serving in Afghanistan, including Private Aaron McClure, from Ipswich, who was killed by a bomb in Afghanistan along with two others from the 1st Battalion in August last year.

n. Do you want to send a message of thanks to Suffolk's soldiers? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN or e-mail eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk