Tributes to Lyme Regis war hero Bill Kenely

PUBLISHED: 13:07 04 May 2010 | UPDATED: 01:13 16 June 2010

BILL Kenely.

BILL Kenely.

RESIDENTS have been shocked and saddened by the sudden and unexplained death of pensioner Bill Kenely, a widower and father.

RESIDENTS have been shocked and saddened by the sudden and unexplained death of pensioner Bill Kenely, a widower and father. Detectives are trying contact his son.

Former mayor Ken Whetlor, chairman of the Royal British Legion in Lyme Regis, said:

"It's a terrible tragedy when you think he has served his country and all of a sudden, at 80 odd, his life is taken away.

"There's a lot of sadness in my heart about this. Bill lived a long life and he didn't harm anybody - he was a nice old gent.

"He'd always say 'hello' if he saw you, but he generally kept himself to himself.

We were there if he needed help, but he never asked."

He said people were unsure of what happened and waiting for updates.

He said: "I've spoken to the police this morning and they are waiting for reports to come in."

Mr Kenely served for two years in India and Burma with the Lancashire Fusiliers and was the fourth generation of his family to have served the British Army.

He had his medals restored by the British Legion and he was represented with his service medals at a short ceremony.

Events coordinator David Manners said he had noticed Mr Kenely had his Burma Star medal attached to his jacket by only a small piece of black cotton tape.

He said at the time: "Here's a man who saw active service in the Far East and his medals have seen a lot better days.

"So, I decided, with Bill's consent, to get his medals re-ribboned, cleaned and mounted.

"He is proud of what he achieved, full of painful, sad, and sometimes fond, memories and determined to wear his 'new' medals with the dignity they rightly deserve."

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