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  1. ITV Report

Most injured soldier in Afghanistan moved by Prince Charles' MBE 'inspiration' tribute

Lance Bombardier Ben Parkinson with his MBE after an investiture ceremony at Buckingham Palace Photo:

A soldier who survived the worst ever battlefield injuries in Afghanistan said he was moved to be described as an "inspiration" by the Prince of Wales as he made him an MBE.

Lance Bombardier Ben Parkinson lost both legs and suffered more than 40 injuries, including brain damage which affected his memory and speech, in a bomb attack in 2006.

Prince Charles called the paratrooper "an inspiration".

Speaking moments after receiving the honour at Buckingham Palace, he said: "I was surprised at how much Prince Charles knew about me.

"He said I was an inspiration. It made me feel so proud."

L/Br Ben Parkinson and Paralympian Hannah Cockroft after receiving their MBE medals Credit: Sean Dempsey/PA Wire

Last December, when he found out that he would be awarded the MBE, L/ Bbr Ben Parkinson told ITV News that he was "surprised" but would be "on my best behaviour" to receive the medal.

The sight of the determined soldier on his prosthetic legs when he took a turn carrying the Olympic flame through his hometown of Doncaster, South Yorkshire, moved many to tears last July.

It was declared one of the most emotional scenes of the relay.

Crowds cheer on L/Bdr Parkinson as he carries the Olympic Flame in Doncaster.

L/Bdr Parkinson was also one of a group of injured veterans who took part in a gruelling trek in Norway earlier this year.

The expedition, organised by the charity Pilgrim Bandits, retraced the footsteps of the Second World War heroes of Telemark to mark the 70th anniversary of the mission.

Along with other amputees and severely injured servicemen, L/Bdr Parkinson travelled 65 miles across the Hardangervidda in winds of up to 80mph and temperatures of minus 30C (minus 22F).

Speaking of the trek, which he completed on a custom-made sled, the soldier joked: "Have you seen the adverts for beer with Jean-Claude Van Damme? It was colder than that - Damme cold."