Belfast Telegraph

Home News UK

D-Day veteran ‘so grateful’ after receiving replacements for missing medals

Alfred Barlow’s medals were lost during a stop at Norton Canes services, near Walsall, on the M6 Toll.

A blind D-Day veteran has received a set of replacement medals after his own went missing at a motorway service station.

Alfred Barlow, 96, from Stockport, was returning home last month from a pilgrimage to Normandy when the medals were lost.

His wife Masie and his grandson noticed they were missing after he visited the gents at Norton Canes services near Walsall on the M6 Toll on June 8.

Crimestoppers has offered £5,000 and actor Hugh Grant an additional £1,000 to reunite Mr Barlow with the 1939-1945 Star, the France & Germany Star, the 1939-1945 War Medal and the Palestine Medal.

But on Wednesday, he was presented with replacements by Alan Walker, 58, a fellow blind veteran from Hassocks, West Sussex, who was so moved by reading his story that he went out and bought four more medals from a specialist dealer.

Related content

Speaking at a ceremony organised by Blind Veterans UK at the RHS Hampton Court Palace Flower Show, Mr Barlow said: “Today has been overwhelming and I never expected all this fuss.”

He said: “I am so grateful to all the people who have been kind to me and who have been to see me.

“People who don’t know me from Adam and yet they’ve been to see me in my home, I am very grateful to them.”

Mr Barlow, who served with 3rd (Royal Northumberland Fusiliers) Reconnaissance Regiment, and landed on Sword Beach at 10am on D-Day, June 6, 1944, said he was “bitterly disappointed” when he realised the medals were missing.

Related content

“I’ve got some replacements now. It’s not quite the same, but nevertheless I have got some medals that I have earned.

“And that’s the annoying part. I earned those medals during the war for my part on D-Day, going through Europe and chasing the Germans back into Germany.”

Popular

From Belfast Telegraph