A GRATEFUL war veteran has been reunited with the treasured medal he thought he had lost forever.

Douglas Barrett, 77, has thanked the man who found his prized possession, which was stolen from his home in Arkwrights, nearly two months ago.

And he plans to hang the gong in pride of place on his living room wall, rather than keep it in a box as he had before.

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The medal, awarded to Mr Barrett when he became chair of Harlow's Normandy

Veterans Association (NVA), eight years ago, was handed to police after it came to light on ground next to a post box in Tunnmeade, Harlow.

Overjoyed Mr Barrett told the Citizen: "I couldn't believe it when I was told the medal had been found. I was so surprised.

"I had thought the medal would have been thrown in a hedge and not found for years, but it's still in its blue presentation case and everything."

The plucky pensioner, who chased the burglar from his home at the time of the break-in, said he thought the intruder had stolen the medal by accident because it had been hidden in a jewellery box which looked as if it contained valuables.

And he added that he doubted whether he would ever have been able to afford the £310 that a replacement medal would have cost.

DC Elliott Judge, of Harlow police, thanked the "good citizen" who handed in the medal.

And he added: "I would like to thank the Citizen for highlighting Doug's appeal to get his medal back.

"Without the paper's help, the medal might not have been identified and reunited with its owner."

Mr Barrett was one of many NVA members who gathered at Nortel Sports and Social Club, Old Harlow, last Monday, for a memorial service marking 54 years since the D-Day

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