The widow of a RAF serviceman has been reunited with replicas of her late husband’s medals, thanks to the RAF Association’s Benevolent Fund.

Irene Hewlett, from Wroughton was presented with the surprise medals at Wroughton Carnival last weekend.

Irene said: “It was a bit of a shock to be honest. I wasn’t expecting it. Somebody just said ‘Hello Irene’, and I said ‘How do you know my name?’ But it was a lovely surprise and it really made my day.”

President of the Swindon RAF Association, Wing Commander Stuart Patton, reunited Mrs Hewlett with copies of two of Sergeant Morris Hewlett’s medals - the RAF Long Service and Good Conduct medal, and the 1962 General Service medal, for his service in Borneo.

“They disappeared after my husband died eight or nine years ago,” said Irene, a retired X-Ray clerk. The couple had been married for 60 years.

“I was just so upset when he died, I moved out of our bungalow.

“I moved to Swindon but I didn’t like it, I couldn’t settle. Luckily the bungalow didn’t sell and I came back. But I had given all my stuff away.

"I think they must have got lost in all that.

“It means such a lot to have them back because he was very proud of his medals," added Irene.

Sgt Hewlett worked in the RAF for 22 years as a physical training instructor. Prior to this he had been in the Navy throughout the second world war, and in total was awarded six medals during his time in the forces. He was known by many of his colleagues and friends as Speedy.

“He was very athletic,” said Mrs Hewlett. “He was called Speedy by everyone, because he was just that. He was captain of the volleyball team here in Wroughton until he was 75,” she added.

Mrs Hewlett initially contacted the RAF Association to ask the RAF Benevolent Fund for help putting in a new garden path after she suffered a fall. They also replaced her cooked. During this process it was discovered that her husband’s medals were missing.

“I keep the medals now on the side of my bed, so I know where they are and I can keep looking at them.

"I miss him a lot, you won’t find another man like him anywhere," said Mrs Hewlett.

Wg Cdr Patton said: “It is an incredible privilege for the Swindon Branch to have been able to help Irene replace the medals of her late husband, which recognise both operational duties in Borneo, in addition to long service and good conduct. We hope they will offer a small reminder of her family's time in service with the RAF.”

“If it wasn’t for the RAF Association I don’t know what I would have done. It’s wonderful all the work they do to help people like me,” added Irene.

Chairman of the RAF Association in Swindon, Andy Ormston said: “It’s great to see the fundraising we do benefit our local veterans and their families in such a positive way."

The RAF Association works across the country to support those who have served in the RAF and their families.