Royal British Legion hosts ‘fitting’ 75th anniversary of D-Day tribute

Portadown Branch of the Royal British Legion marked the 75th anniversary of D-Day with a very well-attended event in Seagoe Parish Church.

The principal guests for the evening were the High Sheriff of County Armagh, Mr Ian Chapman and the Deputy Lord Mayor of Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon Borough Council, Cllr Margaret Tinsley.

Also in attendance at the special event were descendants of local war time heroes.

The programme featured The Band of The Royal Regiment of Fusiliers (Lancashire) with Director of Music, Cathie Brooks.

The were also reflections of some of Portadown’s veterans from D-Day and the Second World War, which were researched and presented by the local Royal British Legion historian, Richard Edgar.

A poem written after World War II about RAF Sergeant David Dawson Todd, who was killed in action during the war, and who was also a Portadown man, was read by his grandson, Ian, and cadets from the Portadown Army Cadet Force Detachment.

Video clips from The World at War TV series were screened to remind all of the intensity and magnitude of the period leading up to, during and after D-Day.

Overall, the performance lasted almost three hours but for those gathered the time did not seem to matter. The band performance was enjoyed by everyone, having played a melody of music for 45 minutes followed by a second set for 30 minutes as a finale including many popular wartime sing-a-long favourites. A guest who attended the evening stated: “I was very impressed by the organisation and the performance of all who took part and I was delighted to see the cadets play a key role during the evening.

“It was important for young people to understand the sacrifice of the armed forces who fought valiantly for our freedom. This event was truly a fitting tribute and commemoration to D-Day.”