Friday, September 11, 2009
Watch a video report on BBC here
A Royal Marine who saved the lives of his comrades by tackling a would-be suicide bomber in Afghanistan has been named on the military honours list.
Sgt Noel Connolly, 41, of Manchester, threw himself at a Taliban fighter and knocked him off his bike.
The father-of-two, based in Plymouth, will receive the Military Cross from the Queen later in the year.
"I will wear the medal for every bloke in the troop, it's a collective honour, I am humbled and privileged," he said.
"The medal's not just for me, it's for every lad in 42 Commando and the entire Royal Marine Corp," he added.
If the Taliban fighter, who had 150lb of explosives strapped to his body, had succeeded, he could have killed Sgt Connolly along with his 30 comrades who were based in a disused school.
Shortly after he came face-to-face with the Taliban fighter, the soldier's sister Breda Connolly, who lives in Manchester, praised him for his bravery.
She told the BBC: "We are so, so proud of him, what he did out there was amazing.
"It truly is terrifying what they have to face on a daily basis.
"He will just say it's part of his job and that is what he is paid to do, it was just incredibly brave."
The soldier has been in the Royal Marines since he was 19 and has served in Iraq, Congo and Northern Ireland.
He lives in Plymouth with his two daughters and wife, Lorraine.