Remembrance Day: Wounded Newham veteran reflects on her near misses

Trinidad-born Lance Corporal Maurillia Simpson was injured while preparing to deploy to Afghanistan

Trinidad-born Lance Corporal Maurillia Simpson was injured while preparing to deploy to Afghanistan - Credit: Archant

Wounded veteran Maurillia Simpson says Remembrance Day is a chance for her to reflect not only on her fallen comrades but also her own near misses during three tours of Iraq.

“I think of fallen colleagues and I think of my personal experience of three tours,” said the CCTV operative from East Village, Stratford.

“My near misses, my moments of almost being one of them – of being part of the remembrance service. As a soldier I do tend to look within before I look without and I think of where I could have been and what could have been my end.”

The Paralympian and Invictus Games competitor also spoke about the withdrawal of British troops from Afghanistan on Monday, October 27, after 13 years.

She never served in the conflict that has claimed the lives of 453 British military personnel and countless civilians, having been hit by a car while readying for deployment there in 2010. The accident left her unable to walk unaided and saw her discharged from the Royal Logistics Corps on medical grounds, but she said she had friends serving out there who were “relieved” to be returning home.

“Although we had our losses, when I think about what we have gained on a scale I think it evens itself out. I think the mission and the plan wasn’t in vein because we did accomplish more than I thought we would in Afghanistan.”

Britian joined the “war on terror” in 2006, five years after the US led military operations against the Taliban following the attack on the World Trade Centre in 2001.

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