Sheffield & South Yorkshire

Injured soldier Ben Parkinson receives MBE honour

Ben Parkinson
Image caption Ben Parkinson has defied predictions that he would never walk again

An injured paratrooper from Doncaster, who lost both legs in combat, has been appointed an MBE.

Lance Bombardier Ben Parkinson received the honour from the Prince of Wales at a ceremony at Buckingham Palace.

L/Bombardier Parkinson, who carried the Olympic flame last year, said he was moved to be described as an "inspiration" by Prince Charles.

The paratrooper suffered more than 40 injuries in a bomb attack in Afghanistan in 2006.

As well as brain damage which affected his memory and speech, he also broke his pelvis, his back in four places, shattered his arm and chest, and lost both legs.

'Feel so proud'

After receiving the honour, he said: "I was surprised at how much Prince Charles knew about me.

"He said I was an inspiration. It made me feel so proud."

In July he took a turn in carrying the Olympic flame through his hometown on his prosthetic legs. The paratrooper was flanked by hundreds of people as he walked for nearly half an hour with an assistant, who supported his arm.

He was also one of a group of injured veterans who took part in a charity trek in Norway earlier this year.

Along with other amputees and severely injured servicemen, he travelled 65 miles (105km) across the Hardangervidda mountain in winds of up to 80mph (130km/h) and temperatures of -30C.

The expedition, organised by the charity Pilgrim Bandits, retraced the footsteps of World War II heroes of Telemark to mark the 70th anniversary of the mission.

More on this story