On 24th July 2008, British Army dog handler Lance Corporal Kenneth Rowe and his canine companion Sasha were killed in action in Afghanistan.
Lance Corporal Rowe had been due to leave his base, but asked to stay because he was concerned about the level of cover for his comrades... it was a decision that had the most tragic of consequences for the 24 year-old.
I’ve read some of the tributes that were given at the time and Kenneth’s dedication and ability were beyond question... but even if some comfort can be taken from kind words, they can ever fill the enormous gap that must have been left. I never met Kenneth, but I work with his sisters Jeni and Steph; I cannot even begin to imagine the grief of losing a loved one in such violent, awful circumstances and I hope the family is not offended by my mentioning Kenneth...
My own son Chris was one of the lucky ones; he returned safely from tours of Iraq and Afghanistan; all those in our armed forces are professional, inspirational people... the fact that the majority come home only makes even more poignant that fate has determined that some do not...
And so, with genuine respect and humility, I dedicate this blog to the memory of Kenneth Rowe and Sasha... and all those remarkable men and women who have paid the ultimate price whilst carrying out their duty in service of our country.
All my own work... almost.