According to a press release from the Royal Navy, 100-year-old Boyd Salmon, a World War II bomb disposal hero, had his lost wartime medals replaced by Royal Navy divers during a heartfelt ceremony at their base in Portsmouth.

Boyd is one of the last remaining members of a brave team that cleared British and European shores of mines and unexploded ordnance during the war.

Boyd’s extraordinary career began when he joined the Navy at just 17. Initially serving on convoy duties, he was later commissioned as a junior officer. His life took a dramatic turn when he volunteered for “shore-based RMS work,” which he later found out meant Render Mines Safe—a perilous job that involved disarming enemy mines and explosive devices.

During the war, Boyd was part of the ‘Enemy Mining Section’ at HMS Vernon in Portsmouth. His team’s mission was to disable German and Italian mines and to seek out new enemy designs to disarm, gaining crucial knowledge to pass on to other bomb disposal experts.

One of Boyd’s significant missions was clearing the beaches, shores, and harbours of Normandy, which were heavily mined by German forces. While working on the Dutch island of Walcheren, a device exploded nearby, embedding shrapnel in his stomach. Recalling the incident, Boyd said, “Oh, I was born lucky that day.” This injury ended his military career and led to years of treatment and recovery, during which he met and married one of his physiotherapists.

Veteran clearance diver Ginge Fullen discovered Boyd’s wartime exploits while researching for a book on the history of bomb disposal. This led to an invitation for Boyd and his family to visit the Diving and Threat Exploitation Group on Horsea Island in Portsmouth. During his visit, Boyd watched modern divers demonstrate their skills and was introduced to the advanced equipment used today, a far cry from the rudimentary gear of his era.

In a touching ceremony, the divers presented Boyd with replicas of his lost medals. Commander Sean Heaton, Commanding Officer of the DTXG, expressed the unit’s admiration for Boyd, saying, “We are genuinely humbled by you, Sir. Can we please have a round of applause for a genuine living hero.”

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George has a degree in Cyber Security from Glasgow Caledonian University and has a keen interest in naval and cyber security matters and has appeared on national radio and television to discuss current events. George is on Twitter at @geoallison
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Andy reeves
Andy reeves (@guest_831446)
5 seconds ago

the contri of people like him cannot be measure they will have saved many a life by their courage and expertise respect and to live to see 100, I wish I had an ounce of his luck and good fortune.