The parents of a Pulborough soldier who was killed in action in Afghanistan have spoken of their pride at an award he has received.
Lance Corporal James Brynin, who was 22 and serving with the Intelligence Corps when he died in October 2013, was Mentioned in Despatches in the latest Operational Honours and Awards List released by the Ministry of Defence.
It is perhaps the greatest tribute to him that he was willing to risk and ultimately lay down his life for the protection of othersEfrem and Sharon Brynin
James was a former Steyning Grammar School student, played for Horsham FC’s youth team, and worked at Billingshurst Leisure Centre. He excelled in the army and was deployed to Task Force Helmand as an intelligence analyst.
Efrem and Sharon Brynin, James’ parents, said: “We were all really pleased when we heard that James was to be awarded the Mention in Despatches (MiD), for his valour in the face of enemy action in Afghanistan. Not only us, but also James’ regiment and attached regiment’s many friends and colleagues all feel genuine pride that James’ gallantry has been acknowledged in this way.
“The MiD dates back to the First World War, and is considered a real soldier’s fighting award, which would have pleased him greatly. This award also helps us to keep James’ story and memory alive, and gives others, that perhaps never knew him, an insight into the man he was.
“James was one of life’s great individuals, fearlessly independent, he would speak his point of view, not to make others happy, but because that was the way that he felt. He was amongst other things loyal, compassionate, strong and incredibly determined. It is perhaps the greatest tribute to him that he was willing to risk and ultimately lay down his life for the protection of others.
“It is for these reasons that we as a family, as well as his friends and colleagues miss him so greatly, he truly was a unique man.
“Few achieve what he achieved in his short life, and his memory continues to sustain us through the challenges ahead. The clock may have stopped, but the flame will burn forever.
“It has given us great focus and pride that we have managed to raise in excess of £70,000 for charity so far, the majority of which has been for Hounds for Heroes, however, we have also raised money for the Royal British Legion and ABF. Whilst we have no immediate fundraising events scheduled, we continue to support these charities wholeheartedly.”