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Soldier's name added to memorial

PUBLISHED: 10:42 23 June 2008 | UPDATED: 07:28 01 August 2010

AS Joanna Davey took a close-up look at her husband's freshly-chiselled name she bravely stated that it was a very proud day for her and their two young daughters Millie and Morgan.

AS Joanna Davey took a close-up look at her husband's freshly-chiselled name she bravely stated that it was a very proud day for her and their two young daughters Millie and Morgan.

The name Lance Corporal George Davey, in letters standing out and un-weathered by time - like the still bare emotions of his widow - had been added to the other fallen servicemen remembered on Beccles War Memorial.

A crowd of more than 100 - including former comrades from the 1st Battalion Royal Anglian Regiment - gathered in sunshine at the memorial on Sunday afternoon for a service of rededication in honour of L/Cpl Davey.

Lt Ben Howes, who laid a wreath on behalf of the battalion to honour the 23-year-old killed in Afghanistan last year, said: “George was a highly respected and energetic young soldier and loved by everyone. He was a family man as well.”

Among other family members present were L/Cpl Davey's foster parents Rose and Roger Tuthill who said they were proud that so many people had come to honour him in this way.

Mr Tuthill, whose father David, a Far East casualty of the second world war, is also listed on the memorial, said: “As foster parents we saw him through thick and thin but he matured into a lovely young man. He always wanted to go into the Army.”

Representatives from a range of the town's service associations and cadet forces had marched with standards to the memorial in a Veterans Day Parade and laid wreaths in turn.

Those gathering for the service, conducted by the Rev Rich Henderson, included the Mayor of Beccles, David Smith, and ranged from young children to elderly people, some in wheelchairs.

The Rev Henderson led prayers for L/Cpl Davey's family, to give thanks for his life and to remember other war victims past and present.

One old soldier, Gordon Playford, 72, from Worlingham, near Beccles, said his elder brother John had died in action at the age of 18 and that was the reason he had come to pay his respects to L/Cpl Davey.

At the end of the service, Mrs Davey said she was “very proud” her husband's name had been added to the memorial.

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