Scottish town unveils 'soldier bear' statue
PR dla Zagranicy
The town of Duns in southern Scotland has unveiled a life-size statue of Wojtek, a “soldier bear” who saw action in World War II.
The unveiling ceremony involved Polish dancers. Photo: Facebook.com/Duns community council
The statue of the unlikely war hero was donated by Żagan in Poland, Duns' twin town.
Wojtek the Bear joined Polish troops as a cub in Iran, and quickly became a favourite with soldiers.
He was the official mascot of the 22nd Artillery Company, and like his comrades in arms, he was partial to a bottle of beer and the occasional cigarette - which he would eat.
After he was demobilised, Wojtek retired to Edinburgh Zoo in Scotland, where he died in 1963.
The unveiling of the statue coincided with the 70th anniversary of the Battle of Monte Cassino in southern Italy which saw 55,000 allied soldiers, including Poles, killed or injured. (rg/pk)