Slideshow: Moving ceremony honours local fallen soldiers
A MOVING ceremony honoured the memory of two fallen soldiers from a local village at the weekend. About 300 people gathered at the war memorial in Park Street for Sunday s special service during which a bronze-cast plaque bearing the names of Captain Jim
A MOVING ceremony honoured the memory of two fallen soldiers from a local village at the weekend.
About 300 people gathered at the war memorial in Park Street for Sunday's special service during which a bronze-cast plaque bearing the names of Captain Jim Philippson and Lieutenant James Barry, who were both from Bricket Wood, was unveiled.
Captain Philippson died aged 29 during a Taliban ambush in Afghanistan in June 2006 and became the first soldier to be killed in the current deployment there. The ex- St Columba's College pupil who served with 29 Commando Regiment Royal Artillery and 7 Parachute Regiment Royal Artillery was on a mission to help pinned-down colleagues.
Lieutenant Barry died aged 24 in May 1982 during the Falklands War and was part of the 2nd Battalion Parachute Regiment of the Royal Signals.
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The ceremony, organised by St Stephen Parish Council, began with soldiers from the Parachute Regiment marching to the war memorial.
Pardre to the regiment, Richard Tillbrook, conducted the service which included a poignant speech about the two soldiers and their dedication to their Queen and country.
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Tony Philippson and Mrs Audrey Barry unveiled the plaque etched with their sons' names during the service and this was followed by prayers.
A bugle played The Last Post as the standards, held by St Columba's College cadets, were dipped and the National Anthem was sung as they were raised again.
The service was the idea of Parish Councillor Mick Freeman who wanted to mark the lives of soldiers who have died in battle since the two world wars and he has spent the last nine months organising the day.
He thanked everyone who took part in the service.
Mrs Audrey Barry, accompanied by Lieutenant Barry's brother David, said following the service: "It has been very nice and strangely most comforting. It's like a completion."
Tony Philippson said he was touched by the number of people that turned out for the service, which he described as "perfect."
He said that he hopes more parishes, towns and cities will follow the example of St Stephen Parish Council.
Normally Mr Philippson visits the war memorial in Hyde Park Corner on Armistice Day but he said he will now visit the Park Street memorial instead.