Soldier from 1 LANCS on Patrol

British Soldier Killed in Iraq

It is with great sadness that the Ministry of Defence must announce the death of a soldier of 2nd Battalion the Duke of Lancaster’s Regiment in Taji, Iraq.

The soldier, as yet unnamed, is not believed to have been killed by enemy fire. The incident is currently under investigation.

On 2 January, the MOD released the following statement:

It is with regret that the Ministry of Defence must announce the death of a soldier from the 2nd Battalion the Duke of Lancaster’s Regiment.

The death occurred in Taji, Iraq following an incident that is currently under investigation, but we can confirm that it was not as a result of enemy activity.

The family has been informed and has requested a period of grace before the name is released.

According to the British Army website, ‘UK personnel are not in a combat role in Iraq (Operation SHADER) but are on the ground with coalition partners providing training and equipment to Iraqi Security Forces (ISF)’.

Update

The name of the soldier was made public on 3 January: he was Lance Corporal Scott Hetherington, 22, from Middleton, Greater Manchester. friends and family paid tribute to the young soldier on social media. His brother, Nigel Hetherington, posted on Facebook:

I’ll always love you kid. So proud of you it’s unreal. I’ll never forget you or your stories. You truly are one in a million. Sleep tight little bro. Look after nan for us until we meet again. Love you Scott, more than I ever let on.

The MOD released further information on Tuesday, 3 January, stating that LCpl Hetherington was a member of Blenheim Company and a Vehicle Commander in the Force Protection Platoon at Camp Taji, north of Baghdad, Iraq.

Lieutenant Colonel Rob Singleton, Commanding Officer, 2nd Battalion The Duke of Lancaster’s Regiment, said:

Lance Corporal Scott Hetherington was a superb soldier and a first class leader. Utterly professional and talented, he was full of character, fun and his enthusiasm was infectious. The Battalion has lost a huge talent and a real character. He will be missed dearly and we will never forget him. Our hearts go out to his parents, his siblings, his girlfriend and his young daughter. They are in all of our thoughts.

Further details were reported by the British Forces Broadcasting Service on Wednesday, 4 January:

The British soldier who died in Iraq this week was shot dead by a fellow soldier, according to reports.

Sources: British soldier dies in Iraq – British Army Website; https://www.gov.uk/government/news/mod-statement-following-death-of-soldier-in-iraq; The British Army in Iraq; http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/uk-news/tributes-paid-soldier-who-died-9555880; https://www.gov.uk/government/news/lance-corporal-scott-hetherington-has-died; http://www.bfbs.com/news/articles/army/6922

Photo: Members of 1st Battalion The Duke of Lancaster’ Regiment patrolling Nad e Ali centre in Helmand Province, Afghanistan by SAC Neil Chapman, RAF (Crown Copyright, 2008).

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