Welsh D-Day veteran Ted Owens dies just weeks before 99th birthday

Watch: Royal Marine veteran Ted Owens spoke to Forces News in 2019 to mark 75 years since D-Day.

A veteran who landed on Sword Beach on D-Day and has been described as one of the Royal Marine's "finest", has died a few weeks short of his 99th birthday. 

Brigadier Jock Fraser of the Royal Marines tweeted to share his sadness at the news of Ted Owens' death, saying: "We have lost one of our finest. 

"It was a great privilege to have met Ted during DDay75 commemorations – Ted Owens... we salute you."

Pembrokeshire-born veteran Mr Owens of 41 Commando, landed on Sword Beach on 6 June 1944, leaving with shrapnel wounds which saw him spend many weeks in hospital. 

Speaking with Forces News in 2019 to mark 75 years since D-Day, Mr Owens said: "When I landed on the beach on D-Day, before we landed, our officer Lord Lovett, he said: 'righto lads, you're going ashore now'.

"Take your tin hats off, throw them over the side and wear your Green Beret with pride. 

"Our unit had done that all through the war, we never once wore a tin hat. 

"I landed on the beach there and I got badly wounded. I was two-and-a-half months in hospital." 

Once recovered, Mr Owens helped clear the route for shipping into the port of Antwerp, Belgium, during which time he sustained an injury but continued to fight into central Holland. 

Just weeks later, the Royal Marine was hit in the throat by a bullet that ricocheted off a wall. 

After being demobbed, Mr Owens returned to his place of birth, Pembroke Dock, and joined the fire brigade. 

Royal Marine veteran Ted Owens in 2019 CREDIT BFBS
Mr Owens visited Gold Beach in 2019 to mark 75 years since D-Day.

Many decades later, in 2019, Mr Owens appeared in ITV Wales's programme, Lest We Forget, to mark 75 years since D-Day. 

The three-part series saw Mr Owens, then aged 95, travel with two primary school children across France and Germany, telling them his own stories of the Second World War as a young soldier. 

Now, four years later, those who knew Mr Owens are mourning his death. 

Councillor George Manning, mayor of Pembroke Dock, expressed his sadness, saying: "It is with much sadness we learn of the passing of Ted Owens, born and raised in Pembroke Dock, a Royal Marine Commando veteran of the Normandy landings in June 1944. 

"Ted Owen was well respected by all who were fortunate enough to know and meet with him, as I was, an absolute gentleman. 

"As Mayor of Pembroke Dock and on behalf of town councillors and staff we share with Ted's family and close friends their loss of a loved one at this very sad time."

Join Our Newsletter


LIVE boxing | Inter Company event | 1st Battalion the Princess of Wales’s Royal Regiment

No reversal of Army cuts in defence ‘refresh’ | Sitrep podcast

Army Expo unveils future of British Army in open-air theatre experience