Blind Leeds war veteran to march at national Remembrance Sunday service

MARCH: Simon Brown, from Morley, will march at the Cenotaph in London at the weekend.
MARCH: Simon Brown, from Morley, will march at the Cenotaph in London at the weekend.
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A war veteran who was blinded after being shot in the face by a sniper in Iraq will march at the national Remembrance Sunday service in the capital.

Simon Brown, from Morley, will be among 100 other ex-servicemen and women, who have been supported by the Blind Veterans UK charity, that will parade at the Cenotaph in London on Sunday.

The 39-year-old former Woodkirk Academy pupil, served with the Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers in a career as a mechanic that included tours in Germany, Kosovo, Poland, Canada and Iraq.

As the country prepares to mark 100 years since the end of the First World War, Mr Brown said it would be an honour to be involved in the commemoration ceremonies.

“Being able to march at the cenotaph, especially during the centenary, is a massive honour for me,” he told the YEP.

“My great grandad fought in the First World War and I will be wearing his medals on Remembrance Sunday.”

While serving in Iraq, in 2006, the Corporal was shot in the face by a sniper during a rescue mission to save six stranded soldiers, and the bullet entered his left cheek and exited the other side.

When he awoke 17 days later in hospital, he had lost all sight in his left eye and, following several operations was left with about 20 per cent vision in his right eye.

Mr Brown praised the support he received from Blind Veterans UK after losing his sight.

He added: “They built up my confidence, and gave me support with the pragmatic things I needed moving forwards. I learned how to use email again, I learned how to cook meals by myself; things most people take for granted.”