VIDEO: Memorial for Midhurst war hero

FRIENDS and family attended a special service and tree planting in memory of Royal Marine and former Midhurst Grammar School pupil, Dave O’Connor, who was killed in Afghanistan last October.

One of Dave’s best friends, Jess Warren, organised the service which was led by the Rev Derek Welsman.

Close friends Marvin Murphy, and Riam Illett, together with Dave's brother Philip O'Connor, plant the tree

Close friends Marvin Murphy, and Riam Illett, together with Dave's brother Philip O'Connor, plant the tree

Jess said: “I wanted to create a memorial for Dave from the people of Midhurst.

“This gives locals a place to go to remember him.”

At the service on Sunset Hill, there were readings including The Royal Marine’s Prayer and a piece usually given on Remembrance Sunday.

More than 70 people including Dave’s mother and brother were in attendance.

Tags were attached to the tree for people to write their messages on, which will be given to Dave’s family.

Afterwards, the Wheatsheaf pub in Midhurst laid on a barbeque for well-wishers.

Everyone took a shot of port in traditional Marine style, while children were given a shot of Ribena.

Jess said: “Some people only knew Dave posthumously but still came to support us.”