A 100-YEAR-OLD war hero has received a special gift from the Not Forgotten Association.

Harold, from Bembridge, was a wireless operator in the Royal Air Force, and recently received his 100th birthday telegram from the Queen.

To commemorate a landmark year — its 100th anniversary — the Not Forgotten Association sent out a box to all Second World War veterans, including Harold.

The association aims to combat isolation and loneliness for the injured and disabled Armed Forces community.

Harold joined the RAF in Blackpool in 1940, and was posted in Cairo, before being sent with the 106 Squadron to Sumatra a year later.

When the Japanese overran the area, he became a POW in Java, and was not released by American troops until 1945.

Two of his Bembridge neighbours, both ex-RAF, called round to share his present, all the while keeping their distance due to Covid-19.

Among those to join Harold on such a special day was Geoff Giles, who served in the RAF from 1965 to 1971, and is currently the national vice chairman of Aden Veterans' Association, and a SSAFA charity caseworker on the Island.

Geoff paid Harold a visit alongside Tony Bond, a recently retired RAF WO2 Loadmaster who served from 1983 to 2019.

Tony moved to the Island last year, and was eager to get involved in veteran support.