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Pensioner Kenneth Brown sees off thugs Tom Love and Jack Saunders with one punch after army boxing training


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Reports by Paul Hooper and Sam Lennon

A battling pensioner saw off two would-be armed robbers from his house with a single punch.

Kenneth Brown’s unarmed combat skills from the army kicked in when he thumped one of the thugs who had a knife.

The cowardly raiders then ran away, empty-handed.

Kenneth Brown, fought off two raiders at his home
Kenneth Brown, fought off two raiders at his home

The slightly built man – who is 5 feet 4 inches tall and weighs just nine stone – said: “I didn’t think about the danger. I told the police I could have done them a lot more damage, but I didn’t want to get on the wrong side of the law.’’

Teenagers Tom Love and Jack Saunders, who had the knife, have now been jailed.

They had raided the Second World War veteran’s home in Lympne at about 3.30pm on Sunday April 14, 2013, while Mr Brown was watching cricket on television.

Video: Kenneth Brown speaks about the moment he hit back at intruders

Mr Brown, now 88, said: “I heard a banging on the double glazing of my door and there were two youngsters outside.

“They demanded money and one of them pulled back his sleeve and showed that he had a knife.

“I remembered my army training and let him have it.

“I punched him with my right hand on the chest. That pushed him backwards although he didn’t fall over.

“Then they both went off. I had no time to be scared and that’s how they train you in the army.’’

Saunders was given 19 months’ youth custody and Love got 11 months.

Kenneth Brown, left, as a 19-year-old soldier in the 1940s with army pal Ken Double
Kenneth Brown, left, as a 19-year-old soldier in the 1940s with army pal Ken Double

Mr Brown said: “That may teach them a lesson. Young people like these try it on with old people.’’

Mr Brown, served with the Somerset Light Infantry in Asia, mostly in India, in the last months of the Second World War.

"I didn’t think about the danger. I told the police I could have done them a lot more damage" - Kenneth Brown

He was conscripted in the spring of 1945, as the war in Europe was ending but the Allies were still fighting the Japanese in the Far East.

He had been called up for National Service as an 18-year-old and was in the army for two and a half years.

Despite being slightly built, Mr Brown was fully trained in unarmed combat and remembered his skills.

He was in India when the country got its independence in August 1947.

Mr Brown, a single man, is an engineer by trade and was a civilian employee for the Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers for nearly 20 years.


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