The excellence of the Armed Forces and their supporting civilians were recognised last night at the third annual Sun Military Awards (The Millies), organised by The Sun newspaper in close association with the Ministry of Defence.
Their Royal Highnesses The Prince of Wales and The Duchess of Cornwall were guests of honour at the event – billed as "A Night of Heroes" – held at the Imperial War Museum, London, on Wednesday 15 December. They were joined by the Prime Minister and Mrs Cameron, Defence Ministers and military Chiefs, senior government and political figures, and stars from the worlds of entertainment and sport to pay tribute to these unique individuals.
In nine categories, the awards recognised the bravery and professionalism of the men and women working in today’s Armed Forces around the world. Also celebrated were members of the public who in various ways work tirelessly to support our Service personnel.
Alongside the main categories the Judging Panel made two further awards for special recognition. One award was presented to the "Heroes of Sangin", honouring personnel from all three Services who served in the Afghan region until September 2010. The Judges also wished to pay special tribute to the veterans of Bomber Command, the elite force who flew perilous missions and raids over Germany, night after night throughout the Second World War.
General Sir David Richards, Chief of the Defence Staff said:
"This year has once again been challenging for our Servicemen and women, both at home and across the world, defending Britain and its interests by sea, land and air. Every one of our Service personnel engaged in this endeavour deserves our praise.
The Sun Military Awards enables individual members of the public to put forward their own personal heroes for an award, and gives our Armed Forces something vital to achieving their goal - the knowledge that the public is behind them every step of the way."
The ceremony, including unique footage of shortlisted individuals and teams on operations, plus reconstructions of the acts of heroism that were nominated, will be televised on Friday 17 December at 9pm on ITV1.
SUN MILITARY AWARDS
1. Overcoming Adversity
Corporal Andy Reid, 3rd Battalion The Yorkshire Regiment, Warminster, Wiltshire
2. Most Outstanding Sailor or Marine
Warrant Officer 2 Buck Ryan, 40 Commando Royal Marines, Minehead, Somerset
3. Most Outstanding Soldier
Warrant Officer 2 Karl Ley, 11 Explosive Ordnance Disposal Regiment, Royal Logistic Corps, Catterick Garrison, North Yorkshire
4. Most Outstanding Airman
Flight Lieutenant Ian Fortune, RAF Odiham
5. Best Reservist
Squadron Leader Sarah Charters, 4626 Aeromedical Evacuation Squadron Royal Auxiliary Air Force, Eastleigh, Hampshire
6. Support to the Armed Forces
Denny Wise, Forces Children’s Trust, Epsom Downs, Surrey
7. Life Saver Award
Corporal Ricky Furgusson MC, 4th Battalion The Rifles, Telford, Shropshire
8. True Grit Home
Sergeant Keith Best RAF, C Flight, 22 Squadron Royal Air Force, Holyhead, Anglesey
9. Best Unit
1st Battalion The Mercian Regiment, Catterick Garrison, North Yorkshire
10. Judges’ Award for Special Recognition
The Heroes of Sangin
The Veterans of Bomber Command