D-Day hero with PTSD finally gets medals - 70 years after rejecting them

A SECOND World War hero finally presented with his medals after more than 70 years joked: "It's better late than never."

veteran

Colin Palmer gets his medals from Major General Mark Armstrong (Image: Worcester News / SWNS)

D-Day veteran Colin Palmer, 98, served as a private in the British Army form 1941 to 1946. But he declined his medals because he felt war was "terrible". He remained silent about his wartime experiences until VE Day in 1995, when he finally opened up to his family about what he had endured. It is believed he had been suffering from shell shock and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

However, Mr Palmer eventually admitted to his family that he would be keen to have the medals he fought for in order to raise awareness about PTSD.

Mr Palmer's daughter told a worker from Age UK about her father's experiences and the charity agreed to help. After contacting the Ministry of Defence, Mr Palmer's service record confirmed he was due a clutch of medals.

On Wednesday Mr Palmer, of Worcester, was officially presented with his medals by Major General Mark Armstrong, deputy lord lieutenant of Worcestershire.

Father-of-two Mr Palmer received his 1939 to 1945 Star, the France and Germany Star, the Defence Medal and the War Medal.

He was also awarded the Legion d'honneur, the highest French military and civil award, by the Honorary French Consul Robert Mille.

Mr Palmer's wife Meg, 89, attended the ceremony at Worcester's Guildhall, along with their son Dave Palmer, 62, daughter Jane Palmer, 59, and grandson Daniel Leszczynski, 26.

He said: "It's been a very special day."