HE represented our country for 25 years and is the only living Nepalese Gurkha recipient of the Victoria Cross.
Living legend Rambahadur Limbu paid a special visit to Hampshire to help launch a new Winchester business that aims to help Gurkhas thrive in the county.
The 74-year-old, who won the highest award for gallantry in the face of enemy fire, threw his backing behind Mountain Security Service.
Set up by fellow Gurkha Ekraj Nembang, the new venture will hire ex- Gurkha soldiers to provide manned guarding, private drivers, butlers and handymen.
Mr Nembang, who served in the 2nd Battalion of the Royal Gurkha Rifles between 1996 and 2013, said: “It’s a quite good experience and Gurkhas are very suitable for this kind of work. Most of the people are without a job here and I think it will be good for them.”
And having a war hero like Mr Limbu at the launch business was a huge boost for the fledging business.
He was Lance-Corporal in the 2nd Battalion 10th Princess Mary’s Own Gurkha Rifles during the Indonesian Confrontation in Borneo in 1965, when a 30-strong group of Indonesian soldiers opened fire on the party of 16 Gurkhas.
Mr Limbu defeated them with a grenade, and made three trips under open fire to drag his comrades to safety, and as a result was presented with the Victoria Cross when just 26.
Speaking at the celebration, which was held at Lali Gurans Nepalese restaurant, in City Road, the retired captain who served as a Gurkha in the British Army for 25 years, said: “It’s really important the Gurkhas contribute their skills and knowledge to the wider community and be involved in keeping the community safer, because that is what their experience has been and that is what they want to bring to the local communities.
“Mr Nembang and I are from the same district in Nepal, which is why I am here to support him.
“Whilst I am here I also want to meet ex-Gurkhas and other friends, as well as celebrate this happy occasion.”
After the ceremonial lighting of the Panas – a religious ornament similar to a candle stick – Mr Limbu was thanked for his support.
Kamal Bahadur Purja, co-founder of local charity Nepalese Help, said: “Thank you so much, we are so humble and proud to meet you, there are no words that I can express.”