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Ron Mayes, the last Haverhill born survivor of the D-Day landings in World War Two, has died



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Ron Mayes, the last surviving Haverhill born veteran of the June 6, 1944, D-Day landings, has died at the age of 96.

Widower and great-grandfather Mr Mayes, of Paske Avenue, passed away on March 14.

He was a 19-year-old soldier with the 2nd Battalion King’s Shropshire Light Infantry when he landed on Sword Beach, near Hermonville in Normandy.

D-Day veteran Ron Mayes with the Légion d’honneur (Chevalier class) he received in 2017.Picture by Mark Westley
D-Day veteran Ron Mayes with the Légion d’honneur (Chevalier class) he received in 2017.Picture by Mark Westley

He was wounded by shrapnel just three hours after landing in France.

In October 2017, Mr Mayes, was awarded the Légion d’honneur (Chevalier class), the highest distinction for military service given out by the French Government.

At the 2019 Armed Forces Day in Haverhill, Mr Mayes was made a guest of honour, as part of which he shared afternoon tea with the Mayor of Haverhill, Cllr John Burns.

Ron Mayes in his Army uniform
Ron Mayes in his Army uniform

Harry Bowdery, who drove a landing craft onto the beaches of Normandy, is also a resident of Haverhill, but he was born in Lambeth and moved to the town a few years ago.

Mr Mayes' funeral will take place on April 1.

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