A Bexhill woman has told of her pride in seeing her Normandy veteran dad make an emotional return to France to take part in the 70th anniversary of D-day.
Wendy Wells says her 90 year old father Fred Milward, from Westfield, was “overwhelmed” by the respect and treatment he and other survivors were shown.
Fred was a member of the 9th Battalion, 6th Airborne, Parachute regiment, who parachuted into the Merville Battery to silence the guns which were aimed at Sword Beach.
He made the trip to Normandy to attend a number of ceremonies including the service at Ranville Cemetary yesterday where many of his comrades are buried.
Wendy, of Sackville Road, commented: “It goes without saying that my family and I are very proud of my father and all his old pals who have returned to Normandy for many years, to honour their comrades who didn’t come back. He has had a very busy time lately. First he was honoured by the Parish council with a presentation on behalf of Westfield Village, of a framed manuscript thanking him for his part in D Day. Then he and four others were invited to the current Parachute Regiment Barracks, in Colchester , named Merville after the battery in France which is where he dropped in the early hours of D Day. We believe he is now the only known survivor of the storming of that Battery. They gave him a lovely day and he watched the paras training for the drop they were to perform in Normandy on the 5th June. Then he returned to Normandy for the commemorations.This year though has been a bit special, he told me on his return that he had been overwhelmed by his reception over there. Not just the adults but the teenagers and the children all are so appreciative of what they have done.”