The teenaged son of a slain Sussex ‘hero’ is determined to disarm bombs like his father.
Kane Manning’s father Mark worked as a bomb disposal expert for Princess Diana’s Mines Advisory Group (MAG), travelling all over the world. Now he wants to do the same.
Mark Manning, from Lancing, was killed aged 54 in April 2014 by his friend Colin Gale, who hid the body and sought to evade police.
It was not until last year that remains identified as Mr Manning were found near Hampshire Hill in Mid Sussex, more than 20 miles from where he lived.
After a lengthy trial Gale was convicted and jailed for the manslaughter and concealment of the body of Mark Manning, and another man was jailed for concealing the body.
Kane, 19, said: “I’ve been angry and upset with everything that has gone on.
“It’s very hard, I’ve been struggling.
“It’s not easy, but it is what it is. I have got to stay strong and make my dad proud, otherwise it will eat me up.”
Mark Manning travelled the globe raising awareness of the dangers of mines as well as personally defusing bombs.
Kane added: “I want to be a hero around the world like my dad, I’ll do whatever it takes to save people’s lives.”
Kane, who lives in Portslade. grew up listening to his father’s stories about his work. Many of them involved acts of heroism above and beyond disposing of bombs.
“He was in Angola and saw lots of food all locked up and poor people couldn’t get to the food.
“My father got in a truck and went through the fence. It was amazing, all the people were so grateful.”
He also recalled a time when Mark rescued a dying pregnant woman, rushing her to hospital and saving both her life and her baby’s life.
It was when Mark left (MAG) to look after him that Kane realised how much the job meant to his father.
Now Kane is taking steps to take up his father’s work.
“Princess Diana was doing it, and when she died Prince Harry took over. This is a similar situation, I am going to take over what my dad did.”
Currently studying business management at City College Brighton and Hove, Kane said the first step on his journey to join MAG is a training course in Manchester.
Kane added: “I’ll never forget the great moments I had with my dad.”