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Staff and students came together for HSDC’s annual Remembrance Parade to remember those who have lost their lives in the line of duty.

The parade, which took place on HSDC’s South Downs Campus, paid tribute to former Public Services student Richard Hollington. Marine Hollington became the 300th British Serviceman to die as a result of operations in Afghanistan and this year marks the 12th memorial dedicated to Richard.

HSDC’s Uniformed Public and Defence Services and Combined Cadet Force students commenced the service, parading through campus before wreaths were laid by Mr Hollington and CEO, Mike Gaston. The memorial then continued with a reading of ‘In Flanders Fields’ by Richard’s tutor and former course manager. This was then followed by a reading of ‘The Exhortation’ before a two-minute silence.

Uniformed Public and Defence Services Level 3 student Lauren Way continued the readings before children from Little Faces Nursery were invited to place crosses at Richard Hollington’s memorial alongside staff and students.

The service drew to conclusion after the awarding of the Richard Hollington Award, which is awarded each year to an individual or group who demonstrates support and understanding for others. The award went to cadet Alfie, who was awarded due to his support of students with mental health issues. The Uniformed Public and Defence Services and Combined Cadet Force students then marched off, receiving applause from all in attendance.

Mike Gaston, HSDC Principal and Chief Executive, said:

“The Remembrance Parade in today’s context felt very poignant on both campuses when taking a moment to reflect on those who have given so much to allow us the freedoms that we have today.”

Lecturer of Uniformed Public & Defence Services Martyn Bell said:

“The Uniformed Public and Defence Service students were learning drill from the start of the course in September in preparation for the Remembrance Parade. The level of discipline, teamwork and respect was outstanding this year.”

Uniformed Public and Defence Services student Jazz Nichol added:

“HSDC dedicates its Remembrance Parade to someone important to us, Richard Hollington. He was an ex-student at our college and went on to fight in the Afghanistan war and unfortunately lost his life. I had the privilege to hand his wreath over to his dad.

Remembrance for me is a time when I can look and think back to all of the soldiers who lost their lives in such horrible circumstances and it makes me appreciate what I have now, the person I am today and the family I have. It’s a sad time for all and I am so glad there is a time of the year when we remember those special people.”

Everyone who took part contributed to a well-planned and impeccably observed memorial service, with both our Uniformed Public and Defence Services students and the wider HSDC community coming together to pay their respects to Richard, his family and all service people who have served our country.

A huge thank you to everyone involved in the event, it truly is important to honour our armed forces members who have lost their lives on active service in all conflicts.

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