Medal for Major who led troops through tragedy

Major Edward Colver from OC Corunna Company, 3rd Bn The Yorkshire Regiment, holds his MBE
Major Edward Colver from OC Corunna Company, 3rd Bn The Yorkshire Regiment, holds his MBE
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AN ARMY major from the Yorkshire regiment who helped his troops cope with the loss six of their comrades one week into a tour of Afghanistan has collected an MBE.

Major Edward Colver was nearby when Privates Christopher Kershaw, 19, Anthony Frampton, 20, Daniel Wade, 20, Daniel Wilford, 21, Sgt Nigel Coupe, 33, and Corporal Jake Hartley, 20, were killed.

They died as an improvised explosive device hit their armoured Warrior vehicle in Helmand province on March 6 last year.

It was the biggest single loss of life due to enemy action for British forces in action in the Afghanistan War.

The 36-year-old from Sheffield said: “This award isn’t necessarily about the tragedy that happened in March.

“It recognises the achievement of the soldiers and their amazing efforts on the back of such a terrible situation. The way the lads performed was remarkable – I am accepting this award on behalf of all of Corunna Company.”

Major Colver, who was at the ceremony with his parents, wife and two brothers, said they would be celebrating the occasion by staying in the Savoy hotel in central London. He has been awarded the MBE in the military division.

The presentations yesterday at Buckingham Palace saw people from many different walks of life honoured.

The Prince of Wales joked that Mo Farah must be sick of medals as he presented the Olympic star with his CBE.

The 30-year-old Somali-born double gold medallist, who grew up in Hounslow, west London, triumphed in both the 5,000m and 10,000m at last year’s London Games.

He picked up his honour for services to athletics after becoming one of the faces of Britain’s golden summer of sport.

Speaking after receiving the award, he said: “I never in my life imagined coming to Buckingham Palace.

“I remember running past it in the mini-marathon as a kid when I was 13 and thinking it was so beautiful and taking pictures of the lion, so coming inside and receiving this award is great. Prince Charles said ‘You must be getting sick of so many medals’ and to hear someone like the Prince of Wales knows who you are is just brilliant.

“I’m not tired of it at all, I just want to make my country proud and collect as many medals in my career as I can.”

Farah, whose daughters were not able to attend because they are at his home in America, played down recent suggestions he had broken Wimbledon rules by filming play from the Royal Box and posting footage on social media.

“I was filming but I took the film down from Twitter,” he said.

He also gave Andy Murray his backing to become the first British man to win the title at the All England Club for 77 years, saying: “I believe this year he can win it.”

Actor Ewan McGregor was at the investiture ceremony to collect the OBE he was awarded in the New Year Honours list for services to drama and charity.

The 42-year-old stopped to chat to Farah afterwards and congratulated him for being an inspiration to so many people, before the pair posed for photographers.

Wearing a kilt, the Scot said it had never been in doubt that he would come to the Palace in traditional garb.

“I didn’t have to think about it, that was always what I was going to wear,” he said. “If you don’t wear your kilt here, I don’t know where you are going to wear it.”

Cyclist Steven Burke, an Olympic champion in the team pursuit at London 2012, described collecting his MBE as “one of the proudest days of my life”.

The 25-year-old, from Colne in Lancashire, was watched as he picked up his award from the Prince by his parents Sharon and Alvin and his girlfriend Emma Flanagan.

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