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HEROES REMEMBER.

Byline: JAMES TAIT

TEN French Commandos made a nostalgic return to the Highlands for a commemorative service yesterday.

The men, aged between 85 and 92, are among the last surviving members of the Free French Forces who fought in the Second World War.

They were attached to No.4 Commando under the command of their countryman - naval officer Captain Philippe Keiffer - and trained at Achnacarry, near Spean Bridge, at the start of 1944.

On D-Day - June 6, 1944 - they took part in the storming of Sword Beach in Normandy as members of the first Special Service Brigade. The men were led ashore by Lord Lovat and his Piper, Bill Millin, who played Highland Laddie.

Movie epic The Longest Day portrays the fight by Keiffer and his men to take a fortified German stronghold in the coastal town of Ouistreham.

Yesterday the men took part in a special ceremony at the Spean Bridge Commando Memorial before visiting Achnacarry Castle and walking part of the "Commando Trail".

CAPTION(S):

FIGHTING FIT: The soldiers training during WWII; RESPECT: French and British troops pray at the Spean Bridge Commando Memorial
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Publication:The Mirror (London, England)
Date:Apr 30, 2004
Words:186
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