Veteran Reunited With Woman After Keeping WWII Photo Of Her In His Wallet For 78 Years

credit: Education Images / Alamy
Almost 80 years after meeting in France, a Second World War veteran has reunited with a woman who he met just weeks after D-Day. He has kept a photograph of her in his wallet ever since their meeting.

After the horrors that were seen on the beaches of Normandy on June 6, 1944, a moment of calm was shared between a British soldier and a young French teenager as they shared a sandwich, as reported by BBC News.

Reg Pye, 99, never forgot his chance encounter with 14-year-old Huguette - now 92 - in the midst of war, even if their interaction lasted only seconds.

Now - 78 years later - the pair have reunited in Huguette's care home in northern France. Upon first seeing each other after all these years, Reg jokingly said "Here's a jam sandwich," referring to their meeting in 1944.

The picture Reg has kept hold of for 78 years:

"Nice to see you again after such a long time, we got older but we're still the same," Huguette said to the former soldier.

Reg - from West Wales - was in the 224 Field Company, Royal Engineers during the war. He landed on Sword Beach where the allies were invading mainland Europe in an attempt to regain control from the German enemy.

Speaking to the BBC, Reg recounted how he first met Huguette whilst taking a break. "A van pulled up driven by a chap called Geordie and he offered us a can of pilchards," he explained.

"There was also a slice of bread. He put margarine on with a paintbrush and we also had a dollop of red jam. We walked back to where I had parked my van and I shared the pilchards between me and this other chap.

"Then I looked up and there was a girl standing in front of me. I didn't see her coming. She had a, I shouldn't say it, but a shabby white dress on. She didn't want pilchards."

He went on: "She was staring at me and I thought what is she staring at? I looked down and it was the bread. So I offered her the bread."

Though Reg can't recall whether Huguette took the bread, he recalls her "running across the village square and going into the church. I never saw her after that."

The following morning, he awoke to see his mess tin returned and within it, was a picture of the girl. "And that is the photograph I have kept in my wallet for all that time," he explained.

With the help of Taxi Charity for Military Veterans, Reg was able to track down Huguette, who was "extremely touched" that he had done so.
British troops arrive at Sword Beach, 1944. Credit: CBW / Alamy
Surrounded by family, the pair shared a glass of champagne. Reg was thankful that Huguette was "still alive". He said: "In my own mind, I thought she's probably passed away by now because they'd had a hard time when they were young."

At the end of the meeting, Huguette joked that she would have to dump her current boyfriend and "marry" Reg.

He joyfully replied: "Well there we are!"

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