A brave RAF medic who broke her leg in Afghanistan has been honoured at a national awards ceremony.
Mother-of-three Caroline Cooper, 41, attended The Grange School.
While at school she dreamed of being a nurse, and aged eight joined the St John Ambulance Service as a cadet.
Ten years later she joined the RAF as a medic, rising to the rank of flight sergeant.
Together with her medical services team, Caroline, who has served in Northern Ireland, Bosnia and Afghanistan, was nominated for a Millie’s Award, the results of which will be revealed in a televised programme on Thursday.
Caroline’s mum Rosemary Stratfull, said: “We are so proud of her, she loves doing what she does and she does it really well.
“She was in Afghanistan for four months and suffered a broken leg while she was out there.
“They don’t really know how it happened, but they thought it may be due to the weight of the body armour and the things they carry all time over rocks.
“She was due back before her daughter’s seventh birthday, but she got so far and the plane broke down, then she got to Cyprus and the second plane broke down too, which was really disappointing for her.”
The Prince of Wales and The Duchess of Cornwall were guests of honour at the event which was held at the National Maritime Museum in Greenwich and billed as ‘a night of heroes’.
They were joined by the Prime Minister, defence ministers, senior military, government and political figures and stars from the worlds of entertainment and sport including Dame Maggie Smith, Damian Lewis, Lacey Turner, and Simon Cowell to pay tribute to exceptional individuals in the armed forces.
Caroline, who lives with her husband Kevin and the children at RAF Benson, was nominated in the life savers category of the awards, which pays tribute to the work of the medical teams in supporting troops.
General Sir Nick Houghton, Chief of the Defence Staff said: “The Millie’s have provided a remarkable opportunity for the British public to show their appreciation for the courage, selflessness and determination which servicemen and women invariably display. We are all safer because of their sacrifice.”