THE last wish of a Falklands veteran was to have his ashes scattered at sea where shipmates lost their lives.
And it was fulfilled by his widow.
Former HMS Sheffield Leading Marine Engineering Mechanic Andy ‘Ray’ Anderson, from Gosport, died earlier this year.
Before he died, he told his wife Shaheen that he wanted his ashes to be scatted on the site where HMS Sheffield sank during the Falklands conflict.
The committal of his ashes was carried out by the crew of HMS Lancaster in a poignant service.
Widow Shaheen was joined onboard Lancaster by Sandy and Michael Dawson.
It was a pleasure to be able to provide Ray with a fitting end to his journey.Warrant Officer 1 Pete Jones
Sandy was paying respects to her first husband chef Kevin Williams, who was one of those who died when the destroyer sank during the Falklands War.
The ship was destroyed on May 10, 1982 following an Argentine air attack in the Atlantic Ocean.
The ceremony on the flight deck of HMS Lancaster included the reading of a poem which was written for Mrs Anderson by Ray.
It was read by the ship’s only serving Falklands veteran Chief Petty Officer Jess James.
After her husband’s ashes were committed to the sea, rose petals and poppy wreaths were placed at the site.
Warrant Officer 1 Pete Jones said: ‘It was a pleasure to be able to provide Ray with a fitting end to his journey.
‘The ceremony was an emotional event for all concerned.
‘Shaheen showed great dignity and courage throughout.
‘Ray would have been very proud of her for all of the effort she put in to make this happen.’
The ceremony was attended by the entire ship’s company, led by Commanding Officer Cdr Peter Laughton.
Mrs Anderson and the Dawsons, who stayed at Liberty Lodge in Port Stanley, the capital of the Falkland Islands, were assisted in their journey to the South Atlantic by the South Atlantic Medal Association 82 charity and the Falklands Veteran Foundation.
HMS Lancaster is on Atlantic patrol duties.