Rotherham dad’s heroic actions recognised

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Hero soldier Les Binns of Rotherham is among finalists of the Brave Britons’ Awards. in the category of Outstanding Military Bravery.

The decorated soldier is one of the unsung heroes who feature in the second Amplifon Awards to celebrate remarkable people and pets.

Finalists will be judged by a panel including Falklands war veteran Simon Weston.

Les served in Bosnia, Iraq and Afghanistan during a 13-year military career and was close to serious explosion four times. On his first tour of Afghanistan he was awarded a Chief of Joint Operations Commendation and on his second he received a Queen’s Commendation for Bravery.

In 2009, he suffered shrapnel injuries to his face, arm and leg, which left him blind in his left eye, after an Afghan soldier stepped on an IED close by. Three other soldiers died.

He later suffered post-traumatic stress disorder and, as a keen climber, he returned to the sport to help him adjust to normal life. Les was tackling Everest in 2016 when he abandoned his attempt just 500 metres from the summit to save the life of another climber.

Sunita Hazra was sliding out of control and had little oxygen left. Les gave her his spare oxygen bottle and helped her descend, despite falling into five crevasses.

Les attempted the climb again in spring 2017 for the Soldiers’ Charity ABF, but bad weather forced him back. He still raised £35,000. Les, who was raised in Barnsley, lives with fiancée Lindsey and two-year-old daughter Emma. He has retrained as a joiner, and said his nomination was ‘humbling’. Winners will be announced on October 17.