A WAR hero has been honoured with a commemorative bench in his home town.

Sergeant Lee Johnson, from Stockton, was killed by a bomb blast in Helmand province, Afghanistan, in December 2007.

The 33-year-old died when the blast hit his vehicle, while he was serving with the 2nd Battalion The Yorkshire Regiment, training the Afghan National Army.

Stockton Borough Council refused to allow the bench to have a prominent place on the High Street, so his parents, Alan and Sandra Johnson, settled on a space in the Parish Gardens.

Dari Taylor, the MP for Stockton South, unveiled the bench yesterday. Mr and Mrs Johnson laid a bouquet of flowers beside the memorial.

Sgt Johnson was engaged to Lisa McIntosh and had a daughter Lilly Rose and stepson Ashley.

The bench and its upkeep have been paid for by The Green Howards Association at Thornaby Ex-service Club, whose members raised £1,600.