Britains oldest poppy seller who survived Auschwitz dies aged 102
Tributes have poured in for an Auschwitz prisoner-of-war who spent the last 30 years fundraising for the armed forces.
World War II veteran Ron Jones was captured by the Nazis for over two years and said the horrors of the extermination camp drove his passion for poppy selling later in life.
Known as Britains oldest poppy seller, he volunteered for the British Royal Legion for the last three decades and vowed never to let age stop him ahead of turning 102.
Ron, from Newport, had hoped to continue fundraising this year but died in hospital on Sunday following a short illness.
His son Leighton Jones, 73, said: I think getting to 102 years of age wasnt bad going.
Not many people survived Auschwitz extermination camp.
My father was fortunate and would speak for many hours of his ordeal.
My family are also very proud of his determination to help the Poppy Appeal.
Mr Jones died surrounded by his family and was described as a loving father who adored his late wife.
The granddad-of-two was a soldier in the Welsh Regiment and was held by Nazis at prisoner of war at Camp Stalag E715, which was near to the Auschwitz Nazi Germany death camp, for two-and-a-half years.
He said he managed to keep his spirits up by playing goalkeeper in the POW football team once a week.
He opened up about his experience in the 90s and said he hoped by selling poppies people would never forget the sacrifices made by soldiers.
He said the horrors of his experience as a prisoner of war encouraged him to keep fundraising (Picture: PA Archive)
He said: The way the Nazis treated the Jews was horrible. It was like they were less than human.
We always thought the end of the war would come and we always had hope. But it wasnt until we could hear the Russians fighting from the camp that we knew it would soon be oveRead More – Source