– D-Day hero: veterans were “treated like royalty” at 70th anniversary celebration

Stanley Hartill

Stanley Hartill

First published in News

A D-DAY hero has told how the veterans were “treated like royalty” at the celebrations to mark the 70th anniversary of the Normandy landings.

Stanley Hartill of Bournemouth, who landed near Juno Beach with RAF Servicing Commando in 1944, was among the veterans at Portsmouth for the anniversary.

The old soldier, pictured, said around 80-90 veterans were given VIP treatment there with a concert by Bourne-mouth Symphony Orchestra and a meeting with the Princess Royal.

“They treated us like royalty,” he said.

He said Princess Anne and her husband Vice-Admiral Tim Laurence had been full of questions for the veterans. The nice thing was that she didn’t rush.

“She spent time with all the people and listened to them. She was lovely,” he said.

The Normandy veterans also met some of the senior figures in the Royal Navy.

“I’ve never mixed with such high-ranking officers, especially naval officers, in my life.

“They treated us as one of them,” said Mr Hartill.

“They were genuinely interested. I’ll never forget it.”

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