Dagenham hero, 19, is the latest British soldier killed in Afghanistan
A DAGENHAM soldier is the latest casualty in Afghanistan bringing the total of British forces personnel killed in action to 233. Martin Kinggett, 19, from Dagenham was killed by a gunshot wound in Sangin, Helmand Province on Thursday (February 25). His de
A DAGENHAM soldier is the latest casualty in Afghanistan bringing the total of British forces personnel killed in action to 233.
Martin Kinggett, 19, from Dagenham was killed by a gunshot wound in Sangin, Helmand Province on Thursday (February 25).
His death has saddened colleagues and brought a moving tribute from his former commanding officer of 3 Rifles, Lieutenant Colonel Nick Kitson.
He said "Brave as a lion and selfless until the end, he fell to enemy fire while protecting the evacuation of a wounded comrade shot minutes before."
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Rifleman Kinggett was killed while serving with A Company, 4 Rifles and was on a routine foot patrol when he and his colleagues provided covering fire for the evacuation of an injured colleague.
His family paid a moving tribute on Friday.
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"Martin was a loving son, brother, grandson, uncle and boyfriend. He will be missed by many, many people who know him and loved him
"He gave his life doing what he loved, he always wanted to be a solder. He will always be our hero.
Commanding Officer of 4 Rifles, Lieutenant Colonel Rupert Jones said: "Rifleman Kinggett was nothing if not a character and his friends loved him for it.
"He was a young man enjoying life and brightening up the lives of those alongside him. Things were never going to be dull with him around and his mischievous streak saw him push the boundaries regularly and get him into a fair few scrapes
"He was a young man that his mates could absolutely rely on. Indeed, through training he was the man that others naturally went to for assistance. He had a very good heart and was deeply loyal to he friends, loyalty that was repaid without question.
"His family who he loved so openly and talked of so frequently will be devastated at his loss, but will take great pride that he fell as he had lived, helping his friends."
Further tributes were paid by Major Richard Streatfield, Officer Commanding A Company, 4 Rifles.
He said: Rifleman Kinggett was impossible not to like. He arrived in A Company in April 2009.
"He had completed the full repertoire of mistakes one might make as a young Rifleman and even added a couple for good measure before we got to Afghanistan in October. Honest mistakes, borne of exuberance, confidence and a solid belief that he could talk himself out of any scrape.
"Soldiering in Afghanistan was the making of him. On operations, he performed outstandingly well. He gained maturity, professional pride, trust, a keen sense of responsibility.
"A Company will be the poorer but we shall continue to run the race that has been set before us. He would expect nothing less."
His platoon sergeant, Jimmy Houston said: "There is much talk about everything that is wrong with youth of today. Martin Kinggett however exemplified everything that is right about the young people of Great Britain."
Secretary of State, Bob Ainsworth MP, said: "I was deeply saddened to hear of the death of Rifleman Martin Kinggett.
"He was a bright and enthusiastic young soldier who was thriving on the responsibility of his duties in Afghanistan.
"His dedication and loyalty is proven by the fact that he died while providing covering fire to allow an injured comrade to be taken to safety.
"My deepest condolences are with his family and friends at this time."
See Wednesday's Barking and Dagenham Post for the full story.