A Middlesbrough man with a remarkable story of “sacrifice and determination to help others” has been awarded a Boro Hero award by Mayor Andy Preston.
Charlie McColgan, 61, from Linthorpe, served with the 9 Parachute Squadron Royal Engineers serving in the Falklands conflict before becoming a Cleveland firefighter and then running his own business.
After retiring from his position as co-owner of the Beautiful Blind Shutter and Flooring Company, Mr McColgan has dedicated more of his time to charity and helping others.
Horrified by the atrocities in Ukraine, he has made several trips to the country’s border to deliver urgently needed medical supplies.
Middlesbrough Mayor Andy Preston said: “Charlie is something of a Middlesbrough superhero. From the Falklands war to helping Ukrainians in need, his life is a story of incredible sacrifice and determination to help others.
“If anybody deserves to be known as a Boro Hero it’s Charlie. What a privilege to meet him.”
Mr McColgan said: “I am totally humbled by the award but it’s not why I do it. I need to thank my wife Julie, she puts up with a lot. I do things on a whim and she is an absolute angel for letting me be who I am.”
Alongside other former veterans, Mr McColgan has so far raised £36,000 for the South Atlantic Medal Association by motorcycling thousands of miles each year to visit the graves of the fallen from the Falklands conflict.
He also paid tribute to his friend Chris “Puggy” North who travels with him and with whom he is writing a book about their adventures.
The two recently completed a trip to Ukraine to provide supplies and on their way back were able to evacuate four Ukrainian women and two of their pet cats to Leipzig in Germany.
Mr McColgan was nominated for the award by his friend, Peter Lacy, who said: “He is one of the people literally will do anything for anyone. Nothing is too much trouble and it’s always done with a good heart and a smile.”