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Report: Soldier's family helped by Poppy Appeal

As Remembrance Day approaches, here is an example of how the Poppy Appeal helped one soldier's family, after he lost his life in Afghanistan.

Jon Mckinlay, from Darlington, was serving with the 1st Battalion The Rifles when he was shot and killed in September 2011, while out on patrol.

His widow Lisa is backing this year's appeal, after experiencing the support of the British Legion.

Amy Welch reports.

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The first service at the North's first Remembrance field

The first service has been held at the Royal British Legion's first ever Field of Remembrance in the North. Friends and family gathered at Saltwell Park in Gateshead to remember service men and women who have died whilst on active service.

Thousands of wooden crosses were planted at Saltwell Park
Thousands of wooden crosses were planted at Saltwell Park Credit: ITV
Paying their respects
Paying their respects Credit: ITV
Crosses were planted in memory of those lost at war
Crosses were planted in memory of those lost at war Credit: ITV
The first service took place at 10.30am 27th October
The first service took place at 10.30am 27th October Credit: ITV
Family and friends of fallen soldiers attended
Family and friends of fallen soldiers attended Credit: ITV

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9000 crosses to create Field of Remembrance

Service men and women and members of the public have been placing some of the 9000 crosses that will form this field of remembrance at Saltwell Park.

Some of those helping this morning were soldiers based at Catterick Garrison in North Yorkshire.

Their involvement was made even more poignant after one of their comrades, Corporal Channing Day, was killed whilst on active duty in Afghanistan earlier this week.

The Field of Remembrance made up of crosses to mark the fallen
The Field of Remembrance made up of crosses to mark the fallen Credit: ITV

Poppy Field planted in Saltwell Park

David Cameron buys a poppy in Downing Street Credit: ohn Stillwell/PA Wire/Press Association Images

Each cross planted in the park will bear a personal message from members of the public and commemorate a life lost in service; from the great World Wars to the ongoing conflict in Afghanistan today.

The North Field of Remembrance will be officially opened on Saturday October 27 at 10.30am with a Dedication Service conducted by military chaplain, The Reverend Charles Hope of 102 Battalion, The Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers Volunteers.

A two-minute silence will be observed at 11am, after which military chiefs from across the region representing the RAF, Army and the Royal Navy will dedicate a Remembrance Cross in the Field.

They will be followed by Anne Turner and Vicky Dunn, both of Gateshead, whose sons were killed in Afghanistan. Local civic dignitaries and officials from The Royal British Legion will also pay their respects to the fallen by planting Remembrance crosses.

The North Field of Remembrance was brought to the region as part of a campaign by Anne Turner to pay tribute to fallen Service men and women from the North.

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