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Mother of ex-Marine killed fighting IS reveals her pride at his sacrifice

The mother of a former Marine from Barnsley has spoken of her devastation at her son's death.

Erik Scurfield was the first Briton to be killed fighting against ISIS.

Today his mother said she didn't blame him for flying out to Syria and that she was immensley proud of the sacrifice he had made. Michael Billington reports.

Hundreds attend ceremony to remember two miners killed during pit strikes

Hundreds of people have attended a ceremony to remember two Yorkshire miners killed during the year-long strike against pit closures in the 1980's.

The annual event also marks the beginning and the end of the bitter dispute - and the subsequent decline of the coal industry. Tina Gelder reports.

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Body of man killed fighting Islamic State in Syria returned to family

The body of a man from Barnsley who was killed fighting Islamic State in Syria has been returned to his family.

Konstandinos Erik Scurfield Credit: Facebook/ Jason Matson

Konstandinos Erik Scurfield, aged 25, was the first British national to die in the fight. He had travelled to the country to work alongside Kurdish forces providing medical aid. An online charity fundraising page in his memory has collected over £1,500.

Read: Former classmates plan memorial for soldier killed fighting IS

Brother lays wreath in memory of miner killed on picket line

The brother of a miner killed on a picket line in the 80's has attended a special service in his memory.

Mark Jones lays a wreath in memory of his brother David Credit: ITV Yorkshire

Davy Jones died along with Joe Green as they picketed during the miners strike in 1984-85.

Hundreds gather outside the National Union of Mineworkers headquarters Credit: ITV Yorkshire

Mark Jones, along with hundreds of others, gathered at the National Union of Mineworkers' headquarters in Barnsley for a wreath-laying ceremony, followed by a meeting and lecture in the historic council chamber of the Yorkshire miners.

Hundreds attend miners' memorial in Barnsley

Hundreds of people have attended a memorial service in Barnsley marking the deaths of two miners killed on a picket line in the 80s.

Flowers at the memorial in Barnsley Credit: ITV Yorkshire

Davy Jones from Yorkshire was struck by a missile during strike action in Nottinghamshire. Joe Green was run down by a lorry while picketing a Yorkshire power station.

No-one has ever been charged over their deaths.

Every year miners, ex-miners and their friends gather at the National Union of Mineworkers' headquarters in Barnsley for a wreath-laying ceremony, followed by a meeting and lecture in the historic council chamber of the Yorkshire miners.

Former classmates plan memorial for Marine killed fighting IS

Schoolfriends of the former Royal Marine from Barnsley killed fighting against Islamic State in Syria say they are mourning a "real character" and remembering his "cheeky smile".

Former US soldier Jordan Matson posted a picture he says is ex-Royal Marine Konstandions Erik Sculfield Credit: Facebook/Jordan Matson

Konstandinos Erik Scurfield from Royston, was reportedly shot dead on Monday while fighting alongside Kurdish forces in the frontline village of Tel Khuzela.

Mr Scurfield's friends from Royston High School, where he studied until 2006, said they are hoping to organise a reunion event in his memory.

And they said they are struggling to reconcile the reports of his front-line fighting in Syria with the laid-back, long-haired, drama-loving teenager they knew.

Emma Hyman, 24, said his school friends have found it difficult to match the fun-loving actor who was loved by everyone in his year with the pictures they have seen of him over the last couple days in military poses wearing combat fatigues.

"He was definitely a bit of an extrovert and he wanted to be a actor," Miss Hyman said.

"He was such a people-person and when he went into the forces it was a big surprise. He wasn't a fighter. He didn't get into any fights at school or anything like that. It's a bit of a mystery because he didn't show interest in those kind of things at all at school. You put people in groups - certain things they might do with their lives and I would never have had him down as becoming a soldier."

She said he also had long hair at school, adding: "Seeing these pictures with his short, soldier hair, is really strange."

Miss Hyman said Mr Scurfield, who was known as Kosta at school, was an extremely popular student and was also very clever - in the top sets for everything.

She said he came to Royston High, which no longer exists, in his early teens from Nottingham and was immediately noticeable because he did not have the ubiquitous Barnsley accent and was "really well-spoken, very polite and very respectful".

She said: "Everybody loved him because he was a real character. He was one of those people who you couldn't find anything negative at all to say about him. He was friendly and funny and really laid back. He had such a cheeky smile. He got on with everybody. That's why it's such a shock for us all. We're trying to organise something so we can all get together and remember him. It's at the early stages at the moment. It's a shame we are going to all come together in these circumstances."

Mr Scurfield's family earlier spoke of their pride in him, while his former partner described him as "amazing" for "doing an unselfish act".

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Ex-Marine killed in Syria 'wanted to make a difference'

Scurfield is believed to have died in battle on Monday.

A former Royal Marine that died fighting against Islamic State in Syria had travelled there to "help other people and to make a difference", his ex-girlfriend has said.

Speaking to the Telegraph, Jemma Weston described her former partner Konstandinos Erik Scurfield as "amazing" for "doing an unselfish act" in joining Kurdish forces' efforts against the militant group.

Scurfield was reportedly shot dead on Monday during a battle in the frontline village of Tel Khuzela.

Weston said that while they had ended their relationship, Scurfield had told her he wanted to return home to her, and said she was heartbroken at the news of his death.

Scurfield was an expert in battlefield medicine, and Weston said he believed going to help against IS was something he had to do.

Ex-Barnsley Marine first Brit Killed fighting Islamic State

A former Royal Marine has become the first Briton to be killed while fighting against Islamic State in Syria.

Former Royal Marine Konstandinos Erik Scurfield was 25-years-old.

He travelled to Syria to work alongside Kurdish forces proving medical aid.

Today, his family has paid tribute to him, saying his flame burned brightly with love, courage, conviction and honour. Frazer Maude reports:

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