Charity night raises �1,300 in memory of Norfolk hero soldier Lewis Hendry

A fundraising night held in memory of paratrooper Lewis Hendry has raised more than �1,300 for charity.

The event, in aid of Help for Heroes, was organised by staff at The Lounge bar in Dereham, where he worked as a glass collector before he joined the army.

Manager Laura Chapman said so many people had been affected by his death in Afghanistan that they decided to hold the fancy-dress event in his name and raise money for the services charity.

Pte Hendry was killed on patrol in as he patrolled an area in the north of the Nad-e Ali district of Helmand province on February 9, just three days before his 21st birthday, and had been a regular at the bar.

The fundraiser was attended by more than 150 people, including the soldier's family, with staff and guests all wearing camouflage clothing.

Miss Chapman said: 'Everything went off brilliantly and we were full by about 8.30pm. We presented his mum with some flowers and had two minute's silence with pictures of Lewis on the projector before going into his song, The World's Greatest.'

The event, held on Friday, also featured a prize draw with prizes donated by local businesses and a special cocktail, made using Sambuca, one of the 20-year-old's favourite drinks.

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'He was a lovely guy, always smiling and having a good time,' Miss Chapman added.

A crowd of about 2,000 packed the Market Place and Church Street in Dereham to pay their respects at Pte Hendry's funeral on Wednesday.

As his cortege passed, shops were closed, work stopped and the usual bustle of the market town paused in a poignant display of respect, sorrow and pride – initially silent, followed by spontaneous ripples of applause.

Pte Hendry had been on a foot patrol to reassure the local population and gather census information with Private Conrad Lewis, of 4th Battalion The Parachute Regiment, when both were killed.

Pte Lewis' funeral, with full military honours, took place at the Collegiate Church of St Mary in Warwick, on Friday and the service was relayed on speakers for the mourners who spilled out of the building.

The 22-year-old reservist's brother Jordan and sister Siobhan were among those who paid tribute during the hour-long service.

In a moving eulogy, his father Tony Lewis told mourners: 'Conrad was the pinnacle of what a paratrooper should be' and he and Pte Lewis' mother, Sandi, 'could not have asked for a better son'.

'Sandi and I always felt that we were watching a very bright but very short burning flame. But we, and more importantly he, wouldn't have had it any other way, except now,'' he said.