WWII Era Veteran Honored in Ceremony for His Actions Clearing UXO

Lymington, Hampshire England 100-year old retired Royal Navy officer Mr. Boyd Salmon, was awarded "replacement medals" for his service clearing UXO during WWII. Mr. Salmon is one of the last survivors of an elite unit who were responsible for disposing of enemy mines and shells on British and European shores.

Salmon joined the British Royal Navy at the age of 17 and worked his way up to become an officer. Unfortunately, his military career was cut short when he was injured from an explosion as he and his team were attempting to clear an area of mines on a Dutch island that was blocking the Allied forces' route to Nazi Germany. Reportedly, as his team approached a large bomb, it exploded leaving him with severe injuries that resulted in years of treatment and recovery. He was awarded medals for his service and sacrifices.

However, over the past few decades, his medals were misplaced by family members. When the Royal Navy learned of the loss, they offered to award him replacements during a ceremony at Naval Base Portsmouth.

Commander Sean Heaton who leads the "Diving and Threat Exploitation Group" (today's version of the unit Mr. Salmon served in) was given the honor of awarding the replica replacement medals. Commander Heaton described Salmon as a "genuine living hero." Mr. Salmon told the current divers at the ceremony he must have been "born lucky."

In a statement, the Royal Navy said: "All mine clearance and bomb disposal work is extremely hazardous, but the exploits of the Enemy Mining Section especially so - as they sought out the latest enemy devices and came up with ways of rendering them safe. In addition to that dangerous work, Boyd was sent to newly liberated north-west Europe to rid it of unexploded ordnance to both support the Allied drive east into the heart of Nazi Germany and allow normal life to resume."

Mr Salmon (top left) is pictured alongside fellow members of the Royal Navy's Enemy Mining Section.

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