A COUNTY Durham teenager has passed a gruelling military test to fulfill a childhood dream of becoming a Royal Marine Commando.
Kieron Reay, 17, from Trimdon Village, received his coveted green beret after a 15 month training course which has been called the toughest in the world.
The former Sedgefield Community College student has passed out of the Commando Training Centre at Lympstone, Devon, with 165 Troop and will now move to 45 Commando Royal marines in Arbroath, Scotland.
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During training he learned how to escape underwater from sinking helicopters, live in the wild and survive on the sea. He also had to speed march, which is a combination of marching and running carrying 32lbs, a speed of one mile every ten minutes.
The final test he overcame was the gruelling 30 miler where he and the other recruits speed marched across Dartmoor in eight hours.
Mr Reay said he wanted to be in the military since he was five, and added: “The change from civi street to military was a shock but I was used to taking orders from being in school.
“The training was hard and sometimes I felt like quitting especially when I was injured and had to go into the Hunter Company rehabilitation troop for six months.
“I have made some really good friends and have had some of the best times.
“I didn’t underestimate Royal Marines training but I’m glad to say it is now over.”