HUNDREDS of veterans are expected to turn out to pay their respects to a Royal Marine from Holywell.

David Butler who died at the age of 71 at Glan Clwyd Hospital at Bodelwyddan, Denbighshire has no known relatives

Graham Jones, chairman of Royal Marine Association for North Wales, told the Leader the association was approached by a friend of Mr Butler’s to see if they could help with the funeral.

He said: “We are funding and organising the funeral which will be a military event to show our support for his service.

“He served in the ‘60s and in Northern Ireland and Cyprus, so for someone giving that level of service, it’s only right as a veteran community, we give him the send-off he deserves.

“We’ve had a good response and it’s going to be well attended. It’s an honour to be asked to organise this for someone who has served our country.

“It’s amazing and it shows that the veteran community and the public are willing to help those vulnerable veterans in the community.”

Mr Butler served between 1965 and 1980 and as well as serving in Northern Ireland and Cyprus he also served in Aden.

The chairman of the Royal Marine Association met with Mr Butler’s friend, John Roberts, to find out more information about the veteran.

Describing what he had found out about, Mr Jones said: “Although he was born in St Asaph, he was raised in Holywell and that’s where he was recruited.

“He went into the Royal Marines at 18. When he left the service, he lived in Holywell and became a painter and decorator.

“He was a likeable and sociable person.”

The funeral will be held on Friday, May 24, at 10am at Flintshire Memorial Park and Crematorium at Northop.

Mr Jones said: “I have had a big response. We are expecting a large veteran presence.

“I would like to thank the veteran community because it’s not just the Royal Marines Association, it’s all sections of the armed forces veteran community, coming on Friday.

“We’re expecting close to 200 to come and they will have their association standards.

“We also have a Royal Marines bugler from the Royal Marines Band Service in Plymouth.”