Funeral for bomb disposal expert

Around 600 people have been at the funeral for a Didcot-based bomb disposal expert killed in Afghanistan.


Captain Daniel Read, from 11 Explosive Ordnance Disposal Regiment, the Royal Logistic Corps, died in an explosion in the Musa Qaleh area of northern Helmand province on Monday 11 January 2010.

The 31 year old had been injured in another blast three months earlier.  He returned to front line duties in December 2009 after his injuries healed.

A funeral took place at Truro Cathedral in Cornwall on Thursday 4 February, followed by a further private service at a nearby cemetorium.

Major Kier Head, the regiment's acting commanding officer, said: "You can pick up from that the remarkable bravery of the man, that he had seen the horrors of one of his team dying but he wanted to go back out to make sure the rest of his team were okay.  He was a really remarkable man."

Maj Head accompanied Cpt Read's widow Lorraine to the funeral service.  The Very Rev Dr Christopher Hardwick, Dean of Truro, welcomed mourners with an opening prayer.

Among those attending were Cpt Read's mother Sally Webb, father Leslie Read, fellow servicemen and Devon and Cornwall Police officers, colleagues of his widow who is a serving officer.

Maj Head described Cpt Read as a "soldier's soldier" and said: "It's such a sad day for us. He really was an immense loss to the regiment.  He was just desperate to go back and finish his tour. He always wanted to be back out there with his team.

"I suggested to him to spend Christmas with his wife Lou but he wanted to finish his tour.

"Lou and he were thinking about moving house and creating a family home so he had everything to live for."

Cpt Read was from the same squadron as Royal Logistics Corps staff sergeant Olaf Schmid who was killed on October 31 while trying to disarm a device in theSangin region of Helmand province.

The best man at his wedding Daved Kirby paid tribute to his friend during the service, and there was also a reading by Captain Joel Rathbone and an address by regimental chaplain Rev Lee Gandiya.

Hymns chosen for the service included Jerusalem, Mine Eyes Have Seen The Glory and I Vow To Thee, My Country.

The last post sounded as the service came to an end with a blessing by the Very Rev Dr Hardwick and a final salute.

The Rt Rev Timothy Thornton, Bishop of Truro, said: "Once again we find ourselves grieving with another family in Cornwall as Captain Daniel Read comes home and his funeral takes place in Truro Cathedral.

"Our hearts go out to his family and friends and to all those who have lost loved ones in the conflicts in which we are engaged."

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