Risca WWII sailor honoured by 90th birthday naval visit

Campaign Series: PRESENTATION: Risca Royal Navy veteran Cliff Davies with the framed mount containing his medals, pictures and insignias presented by crew members from HMS Severn PRESENTATION: Risca Royal Navy veteran Cliff Davies with the framed mount containing his medals, pictures and insignias presented by crew members from HMS Severn

IT IS almost 70 years since Risca great-grandfather Cliff Davies fought in the Royal Navy during the Second World War, but his heroism has not been forgotten.

In the run-up to his 90th birthday he was visited by currently serving naval officers, who presented him with a display case containing his medals and photographs from then and now.

Petty Officer Wilkinson, Leading Engineering Technician (Marine Engineering) Sinclair, Lieutenant Berry and Able Seaman Butterworth presented Mr Davies with his medals while their ship HMS Severn was moored in Newport over Armistice Day last year.

They visited him at the Oaks Retirement Home in Rogerstone.

His son-in-law Ken Holder, 68, said: “Cliff was obviously over the moon to have fellow Royal Navy personnel visiting him to present him with medals he so richly earned.

“The crew sat with him for a long time going over his exploits.”

Mr Davies volunteered for the Royal Navy before he could be called up.

After training in North Wales he became a specialist in gunnery and was placed protecting civilian ships.

He travelled across the world, docking in the shadow of Table Mountain in South Africa, in Egypt, in India and in Murmansk, Russia, after travelling in the Arctic convoys.

After leaving the navy he worked in Panteg steelworks, and later at Llanwern.

He has received seven campaign medals, including the Atlantic Star and two medals from the Russian Embassy, as well as one from President Putin which is yet to arrive, but a space has been saved in the display case.

The visit from fellow seamen was a welcome surprise for Mr Davies, who praised the civilian sailors.

He said: “The real heroes were the crews of the civilian ships who volunteered to do the trips and weren’t ordered to go.”

Mr Davies celebrates his 90th birthday on February 4.

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