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Family pays tribute to dead soldier

A British soldier who was killed in Afghanistan will be "sorely missed" for his "crazy" lifestyle, his family said.

Sapper Darren Foster, from 21 Engineer Regiment, died of gunshot wounds in the Sangin District of Helmand on Friday.

The family of the 20-year-old, from Whitehaven, Cumbria, said: "He was a loving son, grandson and brother who will be sorely missed for his crazy flamboyant lifestyle.

"His only aim was to serve in the Army, for which he made us all proud."

The tributes to Sapper Foster came on the same day that the Ministry of Defence announced the death of a soldier from the Queen's Gurkha Engineers serving with 21 Engineer Regiment.

He was killed during small arms fire in the Nad-e Ali District of Helmand Province on Friday.

Meanwhile, another soldier - from 1st Battalion The Mercian Regiment - was injured after a helicopter crashed at a patrol base in the Nahr-e Saraj district of Helmand on Tuesday.

He was flown back to Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Birmingham where he died on Thursday, surrounded by his family.

The British death toll in the Afghan campaign since 2001 now stands at 331.

Sapper Foster enlisted into the Royal Engineers in September 2008, going on to join Ripon-based 21 Engineer Regiment in May. He went to Afghanistan on July 20, supporting 40 Commando Royal Marines in Sangin through a range of construction and combat engineering tasks, the MoD said.


From Belfast Telegraph