It's a few days since all the excitement of the celebrations of the 70th anniversary of VE Day at the weekend but 96-year-old Steve Cunningham still can’t get over it.
Steve, who was called up into the Royal Marines in October 1939, a month after WW2 began, was one of a small band of ex-servicemen feted in London.
The Almondbury man said he enjoyed a rapturous reception in the capital which included a brief chat with Camilla the Duchess of Cornwall and Prince Charles personally thanking him for his efforts all those decades ago.
He is used to some fame – he has been viewed more than 300,000 on YouTube playing the harmonica.
The capital hosted three days of events to mark the anniversary, seven decades after the announcement that Germany had offered the unconditional surrender to the Allies that brought about the end of the war in Europe on May 8, 1945.
And there were around 1,000 military veterans at Westminster Abbey for a special service to mark the 70th anniversary of VE Day attended by the Queen, senior members of the Royal family, Prime Minister David Cameron and his wife Samantha.
Huge crowds gathered to watch a military parade pass through Westminster towards Buckingham Palace before the Red Arrows flypast.
Steve said: “It was an absolutely marvellous day and I loved every minute of it. It was the most exciting thing that I have ever seen. It will live with me for the rest of my life.
“I have never seen young people react to me like that before.
“Lady Camilla came and had a chat with me, Prince Charles thanked me for all my service and the Lieutenant General of the Royal Marines made a right fuss of me.
“It was amazing. Fame at last at 96!
“I have never experienced anything like that in my life before. It was quite extraordinary, especially after all these years.”
After six years there was a nail hammered on to a white-washed wall for him to hang his coat on – and that was it.
A poor reception for a man who had suffered dysentery, yellow fever and malaria and lost six stone while serving his country as well as being bitten in the foot by a poisonous millipede as he lay in a coma. He was sent to Senegal as part of an ill-fated attempt to oust the Vichy French from the African colony.
During the later stages of the war Steve broke his hand when it was hit by a rifle and so was a signal instructor in the run-up to D-Day. He met Churchill, General de Gaulle and the King while serving at Scapa Flow in Scotland.
And he also has proud memories of being part of a top-secret deployment of Marines to Pembroke in Wales to intercept a potential German invasion of Ireland.
And how many people can boast of meeting one of England’s greatest authors, Evelyn Waugh, who was a battalion intelligence officer at the time?
Although the famously snobbish Waugh was not to everyone’s tastes Steve only has fond memories saying: “He was a hilarious man with a great laugh. He knew how to get on with everyone, even though he was an officer.”
Steve is now a widower after two marriages and has two sons, a stepson, seven grandchildren and three great grandchildren.