D-Day veteran celebrates his 90th birthday

Kenneth Searle

Kenneth Searle

First published in

A D-DAY veteran who fought at Sword Beach has celebrated his 90th birthday.

Kenneth Searle, of Witney, entered his ninth decade on Sunday, August 3, surrounded by friends and family at the Bird in the Hand pub, Whiteoak Green.

He said: “It was a great day, it was wonderful.

“All my family were there including my two very small great-grandsons.

“I had a marvellous time.”

Mr Searle, who has lived in Witney for almost 50 years, was a 19-year-old marine when he landed at Sword Beach, on the Normandy coastline on June 6, 1944.

He said: “I was there at 7.30am on the day after three months of training, we came out [of the boats] into three feet of water. Then they [the Germans] had the audacity to start shooting at us.

“It was not brilliant, and that’s about it.”

He spent four years in the Royal Marines and was also posted to New Guinea and was sent home after the atomic bombs were dropped at Nagasaki and Hiroshima.

On Sunday his partner Margaret Gale and relatives shared his birthday celebrations.

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