Oct 7 2011 by Lisa Boyle, Ayrshire Post (main ed)
AN AFGHAN veteran has been recognised by the Queen for the outstanding work he did in the war zone.
Major Derek Hendry, 45, was quartermaster for 3rd Battalion The Parachute Regiment during their deployment last year.
Based in Camp Bastion, but always on the move, Mauchline man Derek’s responsibilities included resupply of, and infrastructure for, a high tempo battle group as well as the management and repair of all equipment, weapons and vehicles.
Now he is to be honoured with the Queen’s Commendation for Valuable Service for his “innovative procedures and his management of logistics”.
Derek’s citation reads: “The level of support he delivered was truly outstanding. His hard work, extremely long hours and absolute dedication allowed lasting change to be delivered in northern Nad-e Ali. Without his substantial efforts the battlegroup could not have performed as it did.”
When the battalion’s area of responsibility changed at short notice from Sangin to Nad-e-Ali, Derek’s workload increased exponentially.
His citation concludes: “The challenge before Hendry wasimmense and he shouldered a huge responsibility for a protractedperiod. The extent of his successwas remarkable.
“His innovative procedures and his management of logistics were widely recognised across Task Force Helmand and Joint Force Support as the ultimate in best practice.”
But humble hero Derek insists his impressive achievements were all in a day’s work for him and his comrades.
He said: “I’m very pleased and surprised to be recognised and I receive this award on behalf of the whole team working with me in Afghanistan.
“We had a lot to do, but no-one was phased by the size of the task and cracked on with their jobs.
“All I had to do was provide direction, co-ordinate everyone’s efforts and step in when we hit a problem.”
After a gruelling tour, Derek is glad to be back home in Mauchline with his family.
And proud wife Julie and their three sons Arran, 14, and six-year-old twins Billy and Archie love having him back.
Derek is one of 140 personnel to be named in the latest round of operational honours and awards list for actions between October last year and March this year.