SAS: Who Dares Wins star Ollie Ollerton has said he had to grow up fast as a teenage soldier serving in Northern Ireland.
Now 49, he was just 19 when he was sent to Co Armagh a year after joining the Royal Marines.
He told TV documentary-maker Ross Kemp on his podcast that his tour here during the Troubles made him quickly realise being a soldier was not a game after experiencing bombs and seeing dead bodies.
He said: "You join because you've got this glossy brochure.
"And in the glossy brochure you see someone in their full dress uniform and you're thinking, 'All the girls will be gagging for that'.
"Then on the next few pages you see some bloke who's on leave and is in the Bahamas windsurfing and his blonde, beautiful girlfriend is on the beach. And when I joined there was none of that.
"So my first tour out in Northern Ireland, really that was an eye-opener because they call it a conflict but the way I see it is, if someone's trying to kill you, I call that a war.
"And it was a time where I grew up very quickly when I realised it was no longer a game and war was extremely real.
"When you're stood there in the middle of a bomb site where there's been a massive explosion and people are dead, you realise very quickly that it's no longer a game and you need to up your game and grow up."
He added: "I was 19 by that time. The thing is, at the time you think you're a man, but you're so young.
"I mean, I look at my son, he's 19 and it doesn't comprehend I was that age."
Ollerton later became an elite Special Forces soldier serving in the war-torn Middle East but is now better known for his role as one of the instructors on Channel 4 show SAS: Who Dares Wins.
In his book Break Point in 2019, he opened up about being stationed at Bessbrook Mill, which he described as "bona fide bandit country" and said his unit was attacked 19 times in six months.
He said: "Every British soldier in Northern Ireland had a price on their head, and that price was a lot higher for a green (Royal Marine) or red (Parachute Regiment) beret.
"Not that I cared about any of that.
"I'd joined the military to see action. I was wide-eyed with excitement at the possibility of coming into contact with the IRA. To be honest, anything less would have been a disappointment.
"The IRA knew we were coming and wanted to welcome us with a bang. But when our squadron landed to take over from the Coldstream Guards, the place was already a mess.
"Someone from the IRA had driven into a vehicle checkpoint and detonated a 500-pound bomb.
"They thought the changeover had already taken place and the Royal Marines were manning the checkpoint.
"Fortunately for us boys, they'd got their intelligence wrong.
"The compound had been blown to bits and the sky was thick with smoke.
"As we were picking through the wreckage, the sergeant in charge kicked a blackened helmet and said, 'Right then lads, the first thing we need to do is see if we can find any more of these.'
"At first, I didn't know what he meant. But when I looked down at the helmet he'd kicked, I realised it still had a head strapped inside it."