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Page last updated at 10:40 GMT, Friday, 23 March 2012

Decorated soldier's 'lucky grab' at grenade

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More than 130 servicemen and women have been given military honours for their bravery during operations in Afghanistan and Libya.

Royal Navy reservist Michelle Ping, who was mentioned in despatches for her "calm, selfless actions", described to the Today programme's James Naughtie how she came to the aid of a Highlander who had gotten shot while out on patrol in an area of insurgence in Afghanistan.

Michelle said that she jumped onto the roof where Highlander Patterson was injured and lay on top of him to protect him despite being fired upon.

She paid tribute to her colleagues who were with her and "despite having to shout at them to get them organised" she said she "could not have done any of this without them". even though she shouted at them to get them organised.

Serjeant Deacon Cutterham, from The Rifles Regiment who has been awarded the Conspicuous Gallantry Cross, after serving in the Helmand province described how he "went into autopilot" after a live grenade landed close to him in the water.

He had five seconds to act but said "it was a lucky grab" to throw it into another ditch.

"I already knew something was going to happen, so I had a gut feeling and warned off the other boys", he said, going to on to explain that he was trained to post live grenades rather than throwing them into the air because of the dangers of it exploding mid-air.

Michelle Ping said that looking back on it now it was an "extraordinary moment" that made her feel "warm and fuzzy inside" to know that Highland Patterson is back with us.


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