OUISTREHAM, France — An 89-year-old pensioner in East Sussex, England, who was told he couldn’t go to the 70th anniversary commemorations in Normandy defied all odds, sneaking out of his care home and traveling there anyway, according to the Daily Mail.
With his medals hidden under his coat, Bernard Jordan told care home staff he was going out for a walk. Instead, he boarded a coach for France.
By the time staff at the care home realized the Royal Navy veteran was missing he was already in Normandy, the Mail said.
Staff members became alarmed around 7:15 p.m. on Thursday and police started searching the area. They also checked with hospitals, bus services and taxi companies.
It became clear what had happened only when the care home received a call from a veteran saying he met Jordan on a coach on the way to France.
The caller said Jordan would come home when he was ready.
Jordan reportedly checked into a hotel in Ouistreham, France, Thursday night.
Police found the story highly amusing. Brighton Commander Nev Kemp tweeted: “Love this: 89-yr-old veteran reported missing by care home who said he can’t go to Normandy for D-Day70 remembrance. We’ve found him there!”
The Mail reports that Jordan was recently on his way back to England on a ferry from Ouistreham surrounded by burly troops from the 2nd and 3rd Battalions of the Parachute Regiment who declared, “He’s our new best mate.”