Two British servicemen shot dead by an Afghan soldier at the UK headquarters in Helmand were named today.
Sergeant Luke Taylor, 33, of the Royal Marines, and Lance Corporal Michael Foley, 25, of the Adjutant General's Corps, are both fathers of young children.
Sgt Taylor, who was working with an intelligence unit, came from Bournemouth. He married in 2008 and leaves behind wife Nicola and their young son Roan.
The family of Lance Corporal Foley, from Burnley in Lancashire, wife Sophie and three young children Calum, Warren and Jake, parents and brother and sister said in a statement: “Michael passed away while on operational duty in Afghanistan where he was very proud to be serving his country in support of our combined forces in this theatre of operations. He will be sorely missed by his family and friends and everyone privileged to serve with him both on his last tour and during his military career.”
Sgt Taylor had arrived in Afghanistan just a month before his death. His commanding officer described him as a Marine with “ a wealth of experience under his belt, he was fearless and would tackle every challenge head on with his usual charismatic but direct approach. He was a natural focal point; those junior would look up to him, those above would listen when he spoke.”
Defence Secretary, Philip Hammond, said: “I was very saddened to learn of the deaths of Sergeant Luke Taylor and Lance Corporal Michael Foley, brave and committed British servicemen who died in the most tragic of circumstances whilst on operations. They died in the service of their country; they were in Afghanistan to protect Britain’s national security.”