Remembrance Day: 'Support makes me proud of Cleethorpes'
"REMEMBRANCE Day was extremely well supported and it makes me proud to be from Cleethorpes."
These were the words of Bill McCann, of the Armed Forces Events Organising Committee, who said that the death of soldiers from the area had highlighted just how important it was to remember the fallen.
Hundreds lined the streets yesterday as a parade marched from the Market Place to St Peter's Church where there was a service followed by wreath laying, and a minute of silence at 11am, in memory of those who paid the ultimate sacrifice.
Paying their respects were the families of two such men – Guardsman Jimmy Major and Sgt Matthew Telford – who lost their lives when shot by a rogue Afghan police officer in November, 2009.
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Adrian Major, 49, the father of Jimmy Major, said: "More and more people come to these events and it shows that this Afghanistan war affects everyone, not just those that are killed or injured but their families, friends and communities.
"The year that Jimmy died, thousands of people turned up on Remembrance Sunday and there were 300 people marching in the parade.
"I'm very proud when I see all those people paying their respects and it is very important to remember these men, not just Jimmy but everyone who has given their life.
"It is good to see that people remember the soldiers in every conflict, not just the First and Second World War, as soldiers are still giving their lives for their country today. Every time I hear of another soldier killed it brings the memories flooding back and we just feel terrible for their families because we know exactly what they have gone through. From the knock on the door to choosing your son's coffin from a brochure, the whole experience doesn't seem real and it is something that no parent should have to do.
"I'm sure that everyone thinks of the family when they hear someone has been killed on the radio or the TV but it means so much more to us because you just can't comprehend what it is like unless you have been there."
At 1pm, there was a service of remembrance and wreath laying at the Strike Wing Memorial on Cleethorpes seafront, near Ross Castle. Veteran Kenneth Clark, 82, of Brereton Avenue, who served in the Royal Air Force for 20 years, honoured the fallen with his wife Mavis, 78. Mavis now suffers from dementia but Kenneth remembers her father who was a hero in the First World War, the man who gave his wife away 57 years ago.
"He was a very brave and impressive man so I remember him, but I remember all the dead and the sacrifice they have made," he said. Mr Clark added: "I am very proud of my career in the Royal Air Force and I am glad that the tradition of remembering the brave men who gave their lives seems to have come back in recent years."