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Deafening Applause At Oakwell For Soldier

Thursday November 17 2011


Private Matthew Thornton Private Matthew Thornton


This was the scene at Oakwell yesterday (Saturday) when thousands of fans burst into applause to honour the brave Barnsley soldier who died in Afghanistan.

Private Matthew Thornton, from 4th Battalion The Yorkshire Regiment (4 YORKS), was killed on Wednesday (November 9) after being deployed in October. He was part of a patrol that was sent out to engage with the Afghan people but it came under fire - it was while he was returning fire that he was caught in the blast of an improvised explosive device and killed.

Tributes have been flooding in for Matthew - and Barnsley Football Club bosses contact We Are Barnsley earlier this week to see if we could contact the family on their behalf and ask permission for them to do a minute's applause to celebrate his life.

General manager Don Rowing said: "The club were saddened by Matthew's death. We wanted to pay our own respects as a club and give the wider community a chance to do the same by having a minute's applause at Oakwell."

The Football League have granted special permission for the gesture.

A tribute was read out for him before the stadium erupted - if you missed it, here's what happened:

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10 Showing 10 comments

Reply Posted by Carolhomer on Thursday November 17 2011 at 15:06
our thoughts go to all is family.FETCH OUR LADS HOME TOO MUCH LOSS NOW

Reply Posted by Alan Curtis on Sunday November 20 2011 at 10:14
I can't stop thinking about Matthew, such a brave soldier and a sad time for all hs family.
Alan Curtis ex army chef.

Reply Posted by Neo19k on Sunday November 20 2011 at 11:19
what a tragic loss, thinking of the family at this sad time. i agree with carol FETCH OUR LADS HOME

Reply Posted by Lynntutill on Sunday November 20 2011 at 11:20
it made my hair stand on end...so sad......

Reply Posted by Lynniepooz on Sunday November 20 2011 at 11:35
Amazing.  Two Yorkshire teams showing their support for this brave man and his family.  Words cannot describe how I feel, so how on earth his family must feel, God only knows.  RIP, young man. xxx

Reply Posted by Toffy63 on Sunday November 20 2011 at 14:01
Matthews mum and dad liked this a lot, your support is amazing and it is helping us get through this difficult time.thankyou.

Reply Posted by Kay Hays on Sunday November 20 2011 at 23:49
A very brave gentleman, this was a great tribute to him and i feel his family will get comfort from it and a big thankyou Matthew for helping to make this world a better place to be in. R.I.P Soldier your shift is done.xx

Reply Posted by Emma on Monday November 21 2011 at 10:20
I can't stop thinking about him. Hadn't spoken to him for a few years but he was such a good and decent lad. Such a tragedy.

Reply Posted by Truckerisbest on Monday November 21 2011 at 12:12
well done bfc for sorting this out and RIP matthew

Reply Posted by Curly Lloyd on Monday December 5 2011 at 20:25
Well done Barnsley, your a credit to our county ( S. yorks )