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They were joined by a crowd of hundreds who lined the streets of Bury and Rochdale town centres to welcome the troops home from Afghanistan.

 

The family of murdered Fusilier Lee Rigby poignantly watched as soldiers from his old regiment marched through Rochdale yesterday.

They were joined by a crowd of hundreds who lined the streets of Bury and Rochdale town centres to welcome the troops home from Afghanistan.

The 1st Battalion of the Royal Regiment of Fusiliers completed a seven-month tour of duty in central Helmand in October.

The father-of-one, from Middleton, was serving as a soldier in the 2nd Battalion of the regiment at the time of his death in May.

Fusilier Rigby’s family were among parents, friends and children who came out to show their support for the returning heroes.

 

Proud dad Paul Kerr, 50, from Bury, was at the parade to welcome home his two sons, Phil, 28 and 23-year-old Colin.

Paul, who served in the army himself until 1979, said: “I’m so happy to have my two boys home. I’m always so worried when they’re somewhere like Afghanistan and now I can relax knowing they’re safe at home with their family – for the time being at least!”

Charlene Decaurcey, 30, from Levenshulme, was in the crowd to support her husband, Patrick, along with the couple’s 18-month-old son, Jack.

The young mum, who had been married to Patrick for only a week when he left, said: “It’s great to see Jack with his daddy. He was so young when Patrick left so I’m really glad they can have time together now.”

Lieutenant Colonel Jonathan Swift, commanding officer of the 1st Battalion, said: “We take our link with the area very seriously .

“It means so much that people have come out to support us.”

See on www.manchestereveningnews.co.uk

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