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Dr Johnson Beharry VC of the 1st Batallion, Princess Wales Royal Regiment was awarded the Victoria Cross in March 2005. He received this, the highest honour the British Armed Forces can bestow for valour as a result of twice saving members of his unit from ambush in Iraq sustaining serious personal injury as a result. Beharry began his army career driving Warrier armoured vehicles at Catterick. Prior to Iraq, he served in Kosovo and Northern Ireland. Founder of the JBVC Foundation, its mission is to encourage young people to move away from gang culture. It does so by working in conjunction with leading practitioners to help individuals develop sustainable careers.
Following training at Catterick, Johnson Beharry joined the Princess of Wales Royal Regiment in 2001 where he was assigned as a driver of Warrior armoured vehicles in C Company, 1st Battalion.
He went on to serve in Kosovo and Northern Ireland before being posted to Iraq, where in May 2004 he was called to help a foot patrol trapped by a series of ambushes. Beharry’s vehicle was fired upon numerous times during the rescue attempt, resulting in the platoon commander, gunner and a number of other soldiers being injured and with serious damage being inflicted to the vehicle. Owing to the nature of said damage, Beharry was required to expose himself to open fire in order to steer the armoured transport and its passengers to safety. Just a month later, he was caught in another ambush while driving through Al Amarah. During the attack, a rocket propelled grenade exploded just six inches from his head causing injuries to his skull and face while other enemy fire injured his commander and several other members of the crew.
Despite Beharry’s own serious injuries, he managed to retain consciousness and control of the vehicle until he had reached a point of safety, thus once again completing an act of selfless heroism in the line of duty. As a result of these two actions, Beharry was awarded the highest honour the military can bestow, that of the Victoria Cross.
His road to recovery was long having received complex brain surgery but throughout this period he vowed to return to active service if physically able.
Beharry has since Founded of the JBVC Foundation, its mission is to encourage young people to move away from gang culture. It does so by working in conjunction with leading practitioners to help individuals develop sustainable careers.
Now an accomplished motivational speaker, Beharry’s remarkable experiences afford him the opportunity to amaze, inspire and motivate to a wide range of people from any age or walk of life. His topics of speech discuss the merits of discipline, overcoming adversity, bravery, drive and determination.