Belfast Telegraph

Irish D-Day hero Pat Gillen honoured with Chevalier de la Legion d'Honneur

By Brian Hutton

One of Ireland's last surviving D-Day veterans has dedicated his award of France's highest honour to his fellow countrymen who fought in the Second World War.

Pat Gillen (89) - among the first troops to invade Sword beach on June 6, 1944 - was recognised with the Chevalier de la Legion d'Honneur in recognition for his role in the landings.

The honour was bestowed upon him by French Ambassador Jean-Pierre Thebault at the Mercy Hospital in Cork where he is being treated for ill health.

"In accepting this award, other brave Irish men, thousands of young men who lost their lives in pursuit of peace, remain in my memory," Mr Gillen said. "This award is as much theirs as mine."

Belfast Telegraph

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