ONE OF the last Irish survivors of the Second World War, Canon Robert Marsden, has died aged 95.
A decorated veteran of the conflict, in January 2016 Canon Marsden was awarded the Chevalier of the Legion d’Honneur his role in the wartime liberation of France.
Born in Dublin in 1924, Canon Marsden trained with the Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers before embarking on active service in Normandy in 1944.
Part of the 1st battalion, Hampshire Regiment that landed at Mulberry Harbour, he went on to join the 50th Northumbrian Division, assisting in the liberation of Brussels.
He went on to Nijmegen in the Netherlands, on the road to the battle of Arnhem.
His incredible combat record continued from there when he was enlisted as part of a reinforcement unit sent to support the 7th Armoured Division, or “Desert Rats” as they were famously known.
When he returned to Ireland, he was ordained Church of Ireland Deacon for St James’ Parish in Dublin in 1950 and also a year later as Priest.
Following more than 40 years serving in the Clogher Diocese in Currin (Scotshouse), Drum, Clones and Killeevan, he was made Canon and Precentor of Clogher Cathedral.
He also worked across the border in the North of Ireland during the Troubles, striving to achieve peace.
He retired in 1994, living with his late wife Betty in Sandymount.
Canon Marsden will be buried at St Matthew’s Church in Irishtown on Saturday. He is survived by his three children, Joy, Gerald and David.