Soldier honoured with service medal from Duke of Kent

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THE Duke of Kent presented a Gosport soldier with the Meritorious Service Medal to recognise more than 20 years’ service in the army.

Newly-promoted Captain Steven John Barnard, 40, of Germany-based 2nd Battalion The Royal Regiment of Fusiliers joined the army in 1988 as an infantryman and has since worked his way up through the ranks, commissioning from Warrant Officer to Captain this year.

His medal was presented in recognition of his ‘exemplary contribution’ over more than 20 years to the army, the Ministry of Defence said.

The Duke of Kent, who is the Royal Colonel-in-Chief of the battalion, visited Germany to see the training and work the soldiers do.

Capt Barnard, who attended Brune Park School, has served tours of Northern Ireland, Bosnia and Iraq.

He was joined by his wife Wendy for the medal presentation and she received a bunch of flowers from the Duke.

‘It is a massive honour to receive a Meritorious Service Medal,’ said Capt Barnard, pictured left with the Duke.

‘It not only recognises me but also my wife Wendy who has supported me throughout my whole career. You can only have a good career in the army if you have your family around you. It makes it extra special to be presented with my medal by royalty.

‘I was told in December that I would be getting the medal but only recently found out that the Duke of Kent would be presenting it.’