A Lisburn man has been awarded an MBE in the New Year’s Honour List in recognition of his tireless work for the Royal British Legion.
Maurice Leathem was awarded a Member of the Order of the British Empire for his services to the Royal British Legion.
He has been involved with the association for sixty two years, raising thousands of pounds during that time for Veterans and their families.
Speaking to the Ulster Star, Maurice explained that he was humbled to receive the award he said: “I am delighted and humbled to receive this Award in Her Majesty’s New Year Honour’s List in recognition of many years service to the Royal British Legion.
“I am proud to be associated with this fine Charity and hope to offer more assistance in the years ahead.
“I am very much looking forward to visiting the Palace with my family to receive my award in what will be my 80th Birthday year.”
Maurice was keen to praise the other members of Lisburn Royal British Legion for the work they do
He said: “I feel that I’m only one of many who work very hard for the Legion throughout the year.”
News of the award has been widely welcomed by those in the community, Sir Jeffrey Donaldson MP said: “I was absolutely delighted to receive the news that Maurice had been honoured by her majesty in the New Year Honour’s List.
“I have known Maurice for many years and I am intimately aware of the excellent work that he has undertaken on a voluntary basis for the Royal British Legion.
“During these years Maurice has raised thousands of pounds for veterans causes which helped those who have served our country and their families.
“This honour is richly deserved.”
Alderman Paul Porter, who has known Maurice for many years told the Star that he was absolutely delighted at the news.
He said: “I am over the moon for him. I know speaking as a former Mayor the money he raised for my charity was immense.
“He has raised thousands of pounds for many other charities over the years. His work for the Royal British Legion has been renowned in Lisburn.
“I have spoken to many people since the news broke and they are all absolutely delighted. This is recognition for a life of service to the people of Lisburn.