Irish war veteran receives France's top military honour

Irish war veteran receives France's top military honour

AN IRISH war veteran has been awarded France’s highest military honour.

Sir John Leslie, 98, was presented with the Legion d'Honneur at the French embassy in Dublin on Monday, November 9.

During World War Two, he commanded a section of the British Ary in a battle to defend Boulogne Sur Mer from the Germans.

As one of Ireland’s last surviving D-Day veterans, he said he felt “humbled” to receive the award, which honours his bravery in France during the war.

He dedicated the honour to the brave Irish soldiers who fought alongside him.

On accepting the award Sir Jack said: “I accept this award graciously on behalf of all of the brave Irish men who lost their lives in pursuit of a greater good.

“They continue to remain in my memory to this day and this award is for them and their families. Thank you”.

The award was bestowed upon him by President Francois Hollande and the French Government, as an acknowledgement of the Irish soldiers’ role in the liberation of France during the war.

Sir John is a member of an aristocratic family that owns Castle Leslie in Co. Monaghan, which hosted the wedding of Beatles singer Paul McCartney and Heather Mills in 2002.