The Co Down father of a soldier killed in Afghanistan a year ago today said his son was “in the wrong place at the wrong time”.
Marine Robert McKibben, from Co Mayo, was killled by the Taliban in a 25kg roadside bomb in Southern Helmand last year.
Robert, whose father Anthony lives in Newcastle, was part of a routine joint patrol with soldiers from the Afghan National Security Forces when the Jackal vehicle was hit. Marine colleague Neil Dunstan and a member of the security forces also died.
Robert joined the Royal Marines at 27. His father said: “He wanted to join because of the training, which lasts 30 weeks. He had been in the Irish equivalent of the Territorial Army and he just liked that end of life.
“But he had a degree in environmental science as well, and he never really let on about that. It was the discipline and training that attracted him — in fact he was thinking about joining the SBS, the Navy equivalent of the SAS."