Remembrance tribute to Havant marine

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A FLAME was burning brightly in Havant in memory of a marine and all the other men and women who sacrificed their lives for their country.

A single candle was lit at St Faith’s Church to pay tribute to Corporal David O’Connor, the 27-year-old Royal Marine from West Street who died while on patrol in Afghanistan last month.

SHIRT Tribute to Warrant Officer Class 1 Darren Chant at Petersfield Town Football Club. Picture: Malcolm Wells (123666-8125)
SHIRT Tribute to Warrant Officer Class 1 Darren Chant at Petersfield Town Football Club. Picture: Malcolm Wells (123666-8125)

More than 500 people gathered in the town centre for Remembrance Sunday to pay their respects.

With colours flying and drums beating, hundreds of military personnel, cadets, and veterans marched from the Royal British Legion headquarters to St Faith’s Church.

People respectfully clapped as they went by.

As the crowds huddled around Havant’s war memorial, poppy wreathes were laid by dignitaries.

SOLEMN Crowds gather at Havants war memorial. Picture: Jeff Travis (123677-1431)
SOLEMN Crowds gather at Havants war memorial. Picture: Jeff Travis (123677-1431)

At 11am silence fell across the Havant borough to remember the human sacrifice given in the defence of the nation.

Reverend Canon Peter Jones led the church service and paid tribute to Cpl O’Connor.

He said: ‘We shall light a single candle solemnly and respectfully in solidarity with David’s family who mourn his loss, indeed for the whole of our community who feel that pain.’

He described the marine as ‘one of the best’ who was loved and respected by all.

WREATH Cllr Ken Smith in Havant. Picture: Jeff Travis (123677-1443)
WREATH Cllr Ken Smith in Havant. Picture: Jeff Travis (123677-1443)

‘This Remembrance Sunday will be remembered like no other since the end of the Second World War in this town,’ he added.

Poignant services were also held in Emsworth, Waterlooville, Hayling Island and Horndean. On Saturday, the Last Post was played by a bugler at Petersfield Town Football Club in memory of Warrant Officer Class 1 Darren Chant, from Horndean, who died in November 2009 while serving in Afghanistan.

 

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