Ken Riley: Normandy Veteran (1924-2015)

Story: John Mellor/ Photo: Richard Hanson

Ken Riley, of Torbay Road, was the Chairman of the Sheffield branch of the Normandy Veterans Association for 12 years and one of its founder members. In common with other members of the association, Ken landed on the Normandy beaches during ‘Operation Overlord’ which began on 6th June 1944. Ken, at the age of 19, was a radio operator with the Royal Armoured Corps.

Ken said that the worst thing about the war was seeing all the avoidable death and destruction – “it was a fool's game”. On the other hand, the good thing about his war experience was “the total comradeship, sharing and risking our lives together, sharing our last cigarette; this is something I haven't found since returning to ‘civvy’ street”.

In late March Ken died, aged 90. He had lived on his own following the death of his wife a few years ago and was active right up to the end of his life. His funeral at City Road was attended by a large number of family and friends, including a guard of honour by the Sheffield Normandy Veterans Association and other veterans associations – a truly memorable occasion honouring a remarkable veteran of the Normandy landing in June 1944.

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The content on this page was added to the website by John Mellor on 2015-05-28 12:00:12.
The content of the page was last modified by Amy Palmer on 2015-06-08 14:56:29.

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