Last salute to veteran who did fallen comrades proud
Tributes have been paid to a leading member of the Royal Tigers' Association who died last week.
Denis Foran, who joined the Royal Leicestershire Regiment in 1963, died in hospital on Saturday, aged 68.
Mr Foran, of South Wigston, was a familiar figure at Remembrance Day services and other military events, proudly bearing the comrades' association's standard.
During his 14-year military career, Mr Foran served all over the world.
Business Cards From Only £10.95 Delivered www.myprint-247.co.ukView details
Contact: 01858 468192
Valid until: Friday, May 31 2013
Just months after signing up to the Royal Leicestershire Regiment, known as the Tigers, the 18-year-old from New Parks, Leicester, found himself deep in jungle territory.
He served in the Indonesia-Malaysia confrontation and spent six months in the jungles of Borneo in 1963, before going on to serve in Aden, Malta, Cyprus, Bahrain and Northern Ireland, where he received a Mention in Despatches.
Mr Foran's widow, Eileen, said: "He was involved every Remembrance Day and with everything military.
"His involvement with the association took up a lot of his time.
"His former military comrades from all over the world were a big part of his life.
"He had very good friends and he kept in touch with all of them.
"Denis was a gentleman, a good husband, father and grandfather – one of the best. I'm going to miss him terribly."
Mr Foran was a strong supporter of a successful campaign in 2006, backed by more than 1,000 Leicester Mercury readers, to stop French authorities turning a First World War battlefield site at Loos into a rubbish dump.
Many of the 1,308 officers and men who died in the battle for a heavily-fortified German outpost were members of the Leicestershire regiment.
Today, a stone monument marks the site of the bloody struggle.
Mr Foran, a former sergeant, also managed to bring together about 100 soldiers who fought in the Malaya Emergency, who were honoured by the Malaysian government with awards in Leicester in 2007.
He worked three days a week as a driving examiner for the Arriva bus company, a job he had held for more than 25 years.
Speaking to the Mercury before taking part in a Remembrance Day parade and service in 2009, he said: "I suppose when you're a young 'un you just take things in your stride.
"Walking the streets of Aden and Northern Ireland were probably the worst.
"I look back and I think about things that could have happened, but at the time you don't think about great dangers. You just do your job."
Royal Tigers' Association chairman Captain Bob Allen MBE, said: "He was an incredibly proud member of the association and was proud to carry our standard.
"He was kind, thoughtful, efficient – everything."
As well as his wife, Mr Foran leaves three sons, Sean, Liam and Damian and six grandchildren.
A mass and funeral service will take place at St Mary's Catholic Church in South Wigston next Friday at midday.