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Friends raise money for veterans with D-Day challenge

PUBLISHED: 16:26 13 June 2019 | UPDATED: 17:10 13 June 2019

Rich Smith, left, Steve Bailey, Mark Gilly and Alex Holmes reach the end of the trek at Pegasus Bridge in Normandy Picture: STEVE BAILEY

Rich Smith, left, Steve Bailey, Mark Gilly and Alex Holmes reach the end of the trek at Pegasus Bridge in Normandy Picture: STEVE BAILEY

STEVE BAILEY

Two Suffolk men helped raise £2,000 for the Royal British Legion by taking on a 66 mile challenge through Normandy during the D-Day 75 celebrations.

Steve Bailey and Alex Holmes, from Rattlesden, near Stowmarket, teamed up with friends Rich Smith and Mark Gilly from Southampton to take part in the Overlord Challenge.

It took place during the celebrations marking the 75th anniversary of D-Day.

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Participants have to walk from Utah Beach in what was the American sector of the landings to Pegasus Bridge, the famous canal bridge captured by British airborne forces in the early hours of D-Day, carrying a 66lb rucksack over four days.

Steve said: "None of us have family connections with D-Day but we knew it was the anniversary and felt we wanted to give something back and help ensure the memory of those guys who took part lives on.

"The walk was tough but but a fantastic experience. We met a lot of veterans who all supported us and that was incredibly humbling.

"The atmosphere out there during the celebrations was amazing and very inspiring."

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