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calendar   Thursday - September 10, 2009

Hero who saved 30 lives by tackling suicide bomber. Routine stuff for battling Brits.

Well, maybe not so routine.  This is one one brave act and the guy is surely a genuine hero in a world of few. Certainly none among the political class.
Anyway, this soldier has carried on the long tradition of his service.
Well done sir.

Hero squaddie who saved 30 lives by rugby-tackling suicide bomber to get military cross

By Daily Mail Reporter

A Royal Marine is to be awarded a Military Cross after saving up to 30 lives by ‘rugby-tackling’ a suicide bomber.

image

Sergeant Noel Connolly was serving in Afghanistan last November when a bomber rode towards his troop on a motorbike packed with 150lb of explosives.

Sgt Connolly dived on the bomber, grabbed him by the shirt and hauled him from the bike before he was able to detonate the explosives.

But the modest 41-year-old from Manchester insisted he ‘wasn’t brave’ and even tried to keep the feat a secret from his family.

He said:  ‘I was near the school when I caught a fleeting glimpse of a motorbike. I told all my lads to expect a bomber.

‘The motorcyclist looked lost. He turned the bike around up the track and came back.

‘I grabbed two lads and went to intercept him. I had no idea if he was the bomber. The only way of finding out was to challenge him.’

The sergeant then stepped into the road and ordered the man to stop.

‘He stalled the bike and started pushing it away from us. He stopped, straddled it and turned to face us,’ he said. ‘As I got to within 10 metres, there was a loud crack from halfway down the bike.

‘That’s when I saw a small toggle switch had been fitted to his handlebars. As soon as he went for the toggle again I rushed him. I grabbed him by the front of his shirt and hauled him off.’

The motorbike’s frame was found to contain 154lb of explosive. The bomber was handed to police and later jailed for 18 years.

But Sgt Connolly, who serves with 3 Commando Brigade, insisted: ‘’I’m not brave. Someone had to stop him.’
mary connolly

He played down his heroics so much that he did not even tell his family. Then, when the story emerged, he begged his sister not to tell their 81-year-old mother, Mary.

The award is expected to be announced tomorrow with other recipients of honours for gallantry and meritorious service.

A Ministry of Defence spokesman said most of the Operational Honours and Awards list are predominantly from the 3 Commando Brigade Task Force that deployed to Afghanistan in 2008, but it also includes others involved in operations in Iraq and in the UK.

SOURCE


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Posted by peiper   United Kingdom  on 09/10/2009 at 11:30 AM   
Filed Under: • HeroesUKWar-Stories •  
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