I’m not the hero - Norwich City goalkeeper John Ruddy supports Help for Heroes

John Ruddy. Credit: Action Images / Andrew Boyers Livepic

John Ruddy. Credit: Action Images / Andrew Boyers Livepic - Credit: Action Images

He may have been facing a tough time in his day job in recent weeks.

But ahead of Remembrance Sunday, Norwich City keeper John Ruddy shows he has a very clear sense of perspective as he speaks about those wounded while serving overseas in the British armed forces.

The City star's best friend, Lance Corporal Phil Wright, served in Iraq and Afghanistan, and on one patrol his unit found itself trapped in a hut. When an explosive was thrown through a window, shrapnel showered down on him. A fire fight followed, from which he was lucky to survive.

Ruddy has a military background – his father was in the Light Infantry during the Troubles in Northern Ireland – and he grew up on a garrison.

He is a supporter of Help for Heroes, and on a recent tour of Tedworth House, which is run by Help for Heroes to help soldiers and veterans recover, he was accompanied by a national newspaper reporter.

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During the tour, he talked to Corporal Josh Boggi, whose legs and right arm were blown off.

Ruddy said he dislikes footballers being called heroes, and told the newspaper: 'The men and women in the Army are a lot braver than me. If there's a piece of leather in front of you or a gun, I know which one I'd rather face.

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'I don't like it when footballers are referred to like that. Josh is a hero. He's been through so much. To come through it still smiling is testament to his character.

'You have to be mentally tough in sport, but it is nothing compared to the mental toughness needed to recover.

'Some are reluctant to accept what's happening and family have to tell them. That's where Help for Heroes comes in.

'If you're struggling to cope, it's always the right thing to seek help and this is the best place for it.'

See www.helpforheroes.org.uk for more information

What do you think? Write (giving full contact details) to: The Letters Editor, Prospect House, Rouen Road, Norwich NR1 1RE or email eveningnewsletters@archant.co.uk

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