Military Cross for soldier wounded in Afghanistan blast

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A soldier who lost both legs and an eye in a bomb blast in Afghanistan has been given the Military Cross.

Cpl Ricky Furgusson, from Telford in Shropshire, went to help soldiers wounded by improvised explosive devices (IEDs) on four separate occasions.

He was presented with the medal, which recognises exemplary gallantry during active operation, by the Queen.

The 25-year-old, of the 4th Battalion The Rifles, walked to meet the Queen with the aid of carbon fibre legs.

Cpl Furgusson was on his first patrol in Sangin District in October 2009 when his squad was hit by a large IED.

'Disorientating aftermath'

He immediately helped an injured colleague with no regard for his own safety, saving the man's life.

A month later, he saved a second man's life after going to help colleagues twice in one day, the Ministry of Defence (MoD) said.

In a third incident in 2009, Cpl Furgusson managed to stabilise and evacuate another soldier within 35 minutes of being caught in an explosion, although the man later died from his injuries.

But in January this year, he was severely injured by an IED, losing both legs, his left eye, fingers from both hands and suffering facial scars.

His citation notes said he was to be awarded the medal for his bravery and "outstanding leadership".

"Furgusson's bravery, personally ignoring the ever-present IED threat when dashing to the aid of wounded men, and his outstanding leadership, time and again rallying his soldiers in the disorientating aftermath of IED strikes, saved men's lives."

Speaking in September when he learned of his award, Cpl Furgusson said he was shocked to receive such a famed medal.

"I had a slight inkling I might get an award, but an MC was totally out of the window and I wasn't expecting that at all," he said.

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