Fred’s emotional goodbye to fallen comrades

WAR veteran Fred Adamson made an emotional return to the battlefields where he fought to pay tribute to his fallen comrades.

Fred (102) was accompanied by grandson Philip Knight, himself a veteran, earlier this month as he went to the British Normandy Memorial in France and the “Gold” beach where he landed on “D-Day plus 4” in 1944.

The tour was organised for veterans like Fred, who served in the Kings Own Yorkshire Light Infantry, by the KOYLI, Light Infantry and Rifles Association.

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Philip said Fred, of Conisbrough, had been touched to visit the memorial, which records the names of the 22,442 servicemen and women under British command who fell on D-Day and during the Battle of Normandy, including many of Fred’s comrades.

“We also visited our American allies’ cemetery at Omaha beach and the Gold beach where Fred landed,” he said.

“Fred also received a civic reception at Fontenay-Le-Pesnel in recognition of his and his comrades’ work in the liberation of France and in particular the area in and around Fontenay, where Fred and his regiment fought some fierce battles.

“The group held a number of remembrance services on the tour, which included Last Post ceremonies, and a ceremony at the civic reception.

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“As Fred is from Conisbrough, we paid particular homage to friend and fellow Conisbrough resident Ronnie McGrath, a KOYLI soldier who was only 17 when he was killed in Normandy in June 1944.”

Fred has previously visited battlefield sites in France in 1986, 1989 and 2019, and took trips in 1995 and 2005 to see the areas of Holland where he had fought.

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