An RAF search and rescue crew member has been handed the Queen’s Gallantry Medal for bravery as part of a daring rescue operation.
Sergeant Daniel Allanson, from Hadleigh, will attend Buckingham Palace later in the year when he will be presented with the medal for his part in a rescue off the cost of the Falklands Isles.
At the bottom of the winch as part of a four-man rescue team, Sgt Allanson helped locate a fisherman lost overboard 60 miles north-east of the islands on July 28 last year.
The crew found the missing man despite facing 45-foot high waves, torrential rain and 55mph winds, with one crew member describing it as the worst conditions he had ever encountered.
Sgt Allanson managed to recover the man from the freezing water but, despite his efforts, the man was later pronounced dead at King Edward VII Memorial Hospital in Stanley.
“We were very sad that he didn’t pull through, despite our best efforts,” said the 34-year-old, who is based at Wattisham Airfield. “The only solace we can take is that we could at least return him to his family.”