A HERO soldier dragged an injured pal to safety and then refused to leave the front line in Afghanistan so he could clear a path of bombs to keep his colleagues safe.
Lance Corporal Greg Hind, pictured, eventually had to be ordered by a senior officer to get his wounds treated three days after he was hit by shrapnel from a blast.
And then the bomb disposal expert would only return to base after he cleared a three-mile trek of lethal devices.
Today he will return home to Hartlepool a hero after being awarded a Queen’s Commendation for Bravery.
But the modest squaddie said: “I’m not a hero, I was just doing my job.”
The 26-year-old from the 39 Engineer Regiment was serving in the Helmand Province in July last year when disaster struck.
L/Cpl Hind was making his way into a compound to clear it of any life-threatening hazards when he was suddenly “launched through the air” after a blast.
The hero described to the Mail the moment he rose to his feet with blood pouring from his face to see his pal screaming for help with the lower half of his left leg hanging off.
Despite an “awful” burning sensation down his neck, L/Cpl Hind crawled over to his pal and managed to bandage his leg and stop the constant loss of blood.
Then with the help of colleagues who had rushed to the scene, the injured life-saver then managed to get a stretcher to his pain-stricken friend, haul him over a 15ft wall and then waited for 45 minutes for a helicopter to arrive.
The brave soldier then went back into the compound to complete a three-day fingertip search for bombs, even though his face had been showered with stones and glass from the blast.
“All I remember is making our way into the compound and the next thing I had been thrown into the air,” said L/Cpl Hind, looking back on the day the drama unfolded.
“You don’t think of anything when something like that is happening, you just act automatically.”
He added: “If it was going to be my time then it was going to be my time, but I wasn’t going to lay there and do nothing about it.”
L/Cpl Hind is now preparing himself for a trip to the capital where he will be rewarded for his heroics at Buckingham Palace.
Today he is reunited with his proud wife, Claire, 25, who he lives with on the Headland and who will make the trip to London with him.
“I think Claire was even more proud than me when we got the letter to say I had been awarded the commendation, she was over the moon,” the former Henry Smith School pupil told the Mail ahead of his return to his home town.
It is not the first time the Hind family have celebrated such an award.
His younger sister, Stacey Barnaby, 23, who is currently serving in the Army in Germany, was awarded a General Officer Commanding Commendation.
L/Cpl Hind, who grew up in the West View area of Hartlepool, with mum and dad, Marylin and Richard – who now live in Saudi Arabia – and older brother Scott, 27, said: “It will be another proud moment for the family.
“I am still waiting for the exact date, but I’m looking forward to it.”
●DO you know of anyone risking their lives in the armed services abroad, if so contact the Mail on (01429) 239381.