Ranger Aaron McCormick killed in Afghanistan
15 Nov 10
It is with sadness that the Ministry of Defence must confirm that Ranger Aaron McCormick, from 1st Battalion The Royal Irish Regiment, serving as part of Combined Force Nad 'Ali (South), was killed in Helmand, southern Afghanistan, on Sunday 14 November 2010.
Ranger McCormick had been helping to clear an area of improvised explosive devices (IEDs) during a security patrol in Nad 'Ali when he was killed in an explosion.
Ranger Aaron McCormick
Rgr McCormick, aged 22, came from Coleraine in County Londonderry, Northern Ireland. On completion of his recruit training, he joined 1st Battalion The Royal Irish Regiment (1 R IRISH) at Tern Hill, Shropshire, in January 2008.
Rgr McCormick was posted to A Company, where he served with distinction for two-and-a-half years. His professionalism, selflessness and enthusiasm were well known across the Company and the Battalion. Rgr McCormick had served once before in Afghanistan on Op HERRICK 8, and was quickly identified as a quality soldier. Voluntarily, he took on the responsibility as the lead Vallon (mine detection) man. He would be the first man on any patrol, showing the strength of character and courage that he would come to be known for.
Faugh-A-Ballagh! ('Clear the way!'), is the Regiment's motto, and Rgr McCormick was a man who truly cleared the way.
Despite a relatively short time in the Army he was able to offer guidance and advice to the newest members of his unit, often over a brew and having a chat about 'Star Wars'; he was a huge fan.
Rgr McCormick was very well educated and had aspirations to complete a degree in education in the future, a career to which he would have been well suited.
Always ready with a smile, Rgr McCormick was always at the centre of the 'craic' and he will be sorely missed by all members of The Royal Irish Regiment. He leaves behind his mother, Margaret, his father, Lesley, his sisters, Callie-Ann and Tammy, his brother, Michael, and his girlfriend, Becky. Our thoughts are with his family at this difficult time.
Lieutenant Colonel Colin Weir MBE, Commanding Officer, 1 R IRISH, said:
"Ranger Aaron McCormick was the epitome of the Irish Infantry soldier: tough; selfless; good-humoured and full of compassion. Today, there is a gap in our ranks which no ordinary man could fill. He was the best of his country and we mourn his loss. Today, we have a heavy heart. Tomorrow, in his honour and because it is right, his brother Rangers will steel themselves once again, will step out on patrol, and will face down the enemy. This place is already better for Aaron having been here; we will now build on his good work with renewed determination to win. (More here at MoD)
Ranger McCormick gave his all on Remembrance Day, as people across Britain paid tribute to all who have served so honourably in the British forces:
Reverend Mike Roemmele said he had visited his family, who were only just back from a holiday.
"They are obviously completely devastated by the news," he said.
"He has sadly only had a couple of months there and he is the first of the regiment who has died on active service since he and his friends were sent out."
Mr Roemmele said Aaron was "a lad who was full of life, had a great deal of fun and had a number of interests but his primary interest was his service and being with his friends in the Army". (more at the Beeb here)
From the Belfast Telegraph: