SWNS_MATTHEW_RAWLINS_16

Matthew Rawlins, 37, from Plymouth, Devon, with his partner Amy Fletcher, 28. See SWNS story SWLOVE; A former sailor who was left a virtual MUTE for eight years after watching two comrades die in a training incident has finally found his voice – to propose to his new sweetheart. Matthew Rawlins was only able to speak properly for the first time again after meeting his partner Amy Fletcher, known as AJ. He had lived with the horrors of PTSD since witnessing two fellow sailors drown after they had fallen overboard during a training exercise in the ice-cold Baltic Sea in 2002. The subsequent years left him only able to communicate via hand signals as his muffles were inaudible.

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