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Shot Gurkha 'born leader of men'

Comrades of a Gurkha who was shot dead in Afghanistan have described him as a "born leader of men".

Lance Corporal Gajbahadur Gurung from the 1st Battalion The Yorkshire Regiment was serving as a part of Combined Force Nahr-e Saraj (North), and was a member of an International Security Assistance Force foot patrol to disrupt insurgent activity when he received a fatal gunshot wound on Friday.

A total of 397 UK military personnel have died since operations in Afghanistan began in 2001

Nepalese L/Cpl Gurung, known as Gaj, joined the Brigade of Gurkhas on December 18 2004 at British Gurkhas, Pokhara, Nepal, the Ministry of Defence said.

L/Cpl Gurung, who has been deployed to Afghanistan three times during his military career, was posted to 1st Battalion The Yorkshire Regiment in 2009.

A MoD spokesman said during the latest tour, his Company were tasked with holding an area north east of Helmand's second city, Gereshk. On Friday, his patrol came under small arms fire and he was fatally wounded, the spokesman said.

Lieutenant Colonel Dan Bradbury, Commanding Officer, 1st Battalion The Yorkshire Regiment, said: "He touched so many lives for the better. His peers in Delhi Company and all of us in the chain of command knew him as an intelligent, charismatic and inquisitive natural leader of men.

"Never one to let an opportunity go, he was constantly striving to know more, learn more and his ability to get on so well with the local people made him the natural choice to train the Afghan Local Police.

"He died as he lived - at the heart of the action, taking the fight to the enemy and resolute in the face of danger. He was a true Gurkha in body and spirit in everything he did."

The MoD said that L/Cpl Gurung leaves behind his wife Manisha, who lives in Germany, and his immediate family in Nepal.


From Belfast Telegraph