New Year's honours list for most moving contributions in public life

Seven moving stories about people honoured on the New Year's honours list. [Images OBE Kraszewski/Wikimedia - MBE ChrisO/Wikimedia]
Seven moving stories about people honoured on the New Year's honours list. [Images OBE Kraszewski/Wikimedia - MBE ChrisO/Wikimedia]

British divers, a female firefighter, terror attack responders, a father, Emmeline Pankhurst’s descendant, a Welsh rocker and a businesswoman.

Many heart-warming stories are behind the New Year’s honours list, where Britons receive awards for moving contributions in public life.

Besides the famous faces and celebrities, the people receiving honours are the British divers involved in the rescue of the group of Thai boys who were trapped in a cave, paramedics who were involved in the aftermath of terror attacks, the first female firefighter in Northern Ireland, Emmeline Pankhurst's great-granddaughter, a Welsh rocker fighting cancer and a nurse turned businesswoman. Their seven moving stories are included here.

1

British divers involved in rescue of Thai boys trapped in cave

As noted by the BBC, British divers Richard Stanton and John Volanthen were first to reach the Thai boys trapped in a cave this year in a rescue that captured the attention of the world. They received the George Medal. Joshua Bratchley, Vernon Unsworth and Lance Corporal Connor Roe were appointed MBEs for their involvement in the rescue. Jason Mallinson and Christopher Jewell received the Queen’s Gallantry Medal, awarded for commendable acts of bravery.

2

First female firefighter in Northern Ireland

Heather Smart became the first female firefighter in Northern Ireland in 1991 and retired earlier in 2018. Smart will receive an MBE in the latest New Year’s honours. She reportedly paved the way for the now 62 women in the firefighting service in Northern Ireland. Interim chief fire officer Alan Walmsley said she was a “passionate advocate and ambassador” for other female members of the force. He said it was a “fitting recognition” for her services.

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