Dan Walker pays touching tribute to D-Day veteran Harry Billinge ‘He achieved so much’

Harry Billinge: Dan Walker and Sally Nugent pay tribute

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Harry Billinge was one of only four in his unit to survive the invasion of Gold Beach on June 6, 1944, and often spoke about his time during the war. The veteran spent more than 60 years collecting for the Royal British Legion’s Poppy Appeal and working hard to fundraise for a memorial for the soldiers who died during the battle. It was reported he died on April 5 due to a short illness, with BBC Breakfast hosts Dan Walker and Sally Nugent paying a tribute to his extraordinary life.

After the BBC played a short film to show the successes of Harry’s life and the incredible work he had done for veterans and their families, the pair praised his work.

Sally said: “What an amazing, amazing man!”

Dan agreed: “What a beautiful piece there, just bringing all that he did together! So many interviews, and he achieved so much in his 96 years.”

“I know John [Maguire] has been with him all along these last couple of years, it was really lovely that we have John there this morning,” Sally revealed.

Dan added: “I know the news yesterday, so many people reacted with great sadness, he lived an amazing life and did incredible things along the way, but it is still.

“Through this programme and many other programmes, you learn so much about somebody, and then you find out that they died it is still sad, isn’t it.”

Speaking about the interview he did for BBC Breakfast whilst sitting on Normandy beach where he fought, Dan expressed: “It gave an understanding that everyone calls him a hero, and he never ever saw himself as a hero.”

More to follow…

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