Lord Ashcroft KCMG PC has had his latest “hero of the month” article published in Britain at War, the country’s best-selling military history monthly magazine.
The November issue of the magazine has four pages on the life and career of Staff Sergeant Peter Herlick Rene Naya MM, who showed outstanding bravery during the Falklands War of 1982.
Naya, usually known by his nickname of “Pierre”, was born in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania’s largest city, in July 1945, one of five children. In 1964, the family moved to Britain and Naya enlisted in the Royal Army Medical Corps shortly before his 19th birthday.
He was on board RFA Sir Galahad at anchor off East Falkland when the ship was bombed by enemy aircraft on June 8 1982. For over two hours, Naya worked tirelessly to help treat some of the 135 casualties on board, many with serious burns and amputations.
Despite being injured himself, he risked his life time and again and left the ship on the last helicopter. For his valour, he was later awarded the Military Medal (MM). “I certainly don’t consider myself a hero. I just did my job,” he said later.
Naya was discharged from the Army in June 1986 after 22 years’ service. He retired to Portugal with his wife, where he died in Lisbon in October 2012, aged 67.
Lord Ashcroft’s articles for Britain at War over the past nine years have been largely based on excerpts from his seven books on gallantry: Victoria Cross Heroes, Special Forces Heroes, George Cross Heroes, Heroes of the Skies, Special Ops Heroes, Victoria Cross Heroes Volume II and Falklands War Heroes.
Lord Ashcroft is a military historian who has lectured extensively on courage and his various medal collections.
Lord Ashcroft’s latest article appears in the November of Britain at War which is on sale now.