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sainsburysnewportpoppyappealKorean War veteran, Mick Furnell, is taking centre stage at Sainsbury’s in Newport to support the annual Poppy Appeal, as the retailer marks its 20th year supporting The Royal British Legion.

80-year-old Mick was born at the Islands local Albany Barracks in Newport and has been fundraising for The Royal British Legion’s Poppy Appeal in Sainsbury’s for nearly a decade.

Mick was called up for National Service at the age of eighteen. A year later, he joined the 4.2 Mortar 248 Battery and fought in Korea until the ceasefire ended. In 1954, Mick was then sent to the New Territory base in Hong Kong, before finally returning home the following year.

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Mick was invited back to Korea in 2002 and made an “Ambassador of Peace” and received a medal from the Government. For his gallant service to the country during the war, Mick also received The United Nations & Korean Medal along with a ‘Letter of Thanks’ from the President of South Korea.

Sainsbury’s customers can show their support for those affected by conflict, by donating or buying exclusive merchandise – including a tote bag by British designer Amanda Wakeley, rounding up their shopping bill at the till or making a £1 donation through online shopping. Customers can also help The Royal British Legion by recycling their Poppy at Sainsbury’s stores after Armistice Day.

Each year, Mick and Mavis are invited to the Remembrance Day services held at Brighstone Church and then onto the Military Museum at Northwood, for a ‘Wreath of Dedication Service’, which was held on Remembrance Sunday.

For the first time, Sainsbury’s is supporting The Royal British Legion’s Poppy Appeal with an animated TV ad, which aired on 1st November.  It explains the range of ways customers can contribute, and supports the Legion’s new ‘Live On’ strapline by explaining how their donation “is as much about looking to the future, as it is reflecting on the past”.

Reflecting on his experience, Mick Furnell, said:

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“I have been a member and supporter of The Royal British Legion for over 15 years now and my wife and I have spent 9 of those in our local Sainsbury’s. People often praise us for our work, but we feel it is our duty and honour to support the soldiers and forces fighting for us.”

Paul Dyer Store manager for Sainsbury’s Newport, said:

“We really enjoy welcoming the Purnell’s and fellow volunteers into store for the Poppy Appeal. This year marks the WW1 centenary, and also our 20th anniversary supporting The Royal British Legion, so we’re delighted to offer our customers more ways than ever to show their support.”

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