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 Army Dog Handler And Spaniel Repatriated from Afghanistan.

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PostSubject: Army Dog Handler And Spaniel Repatriated from Afghanistan.   Thu Mar 10, 2011 8:32 am

An army dog handler and his record-breaking sniffer dog are being flown home after being killed on operation in Afghanistan.



Lance Corporal Liam Tasker, of the 1st Military Working Dog Regiment, the Royal Army Veterinary Corps, was killed by small arms fire on patrol with his dog in Helmand Province on Tuesday of last week.

His springer spaniel, Theo, suffered a seizure shortly afterwards and died.

Lance Corporal Tasker was described by commanding officers as "a rising star" and "an expert "dog man", who, together with his dog, had made the most operational finds of any individual team in Afghanistan to date, and thereby saved many lives.

Lieutenant Colonel David Thorpe, Commanding Officer, 1st Military Working Dog Regiment, said: "Epitomising the hardworking, determined and ambitious nature of our very best soldiers, he wanted to go to Afghanistan.

"He wanted to ply his trade in the harshest of environments, to be outside of his comfort zone, and he wanted to be successful. He was.

"The work he did in his five months in Afghanistan saved countless lives, of that I have no doubt. He flew the Royal Army Veterinary Corps' flag high; he led from the front and made us proud."

Major Alexander Turner, Officer Commanding No 2 Company, 1st Battalion Irish Guards, added: "A natural with animals, he had an affection for his dog that truly was a window to his soul. His fortitude and zeal for that perilous task was humbling; it imbued us all with confidence.

"He used to joke that Theo was impossible to restrain but I would say the same about Lance Corporal Tasker."

Lance Corporal Tasker's family said: "There are three words that describe Liam: larger than life. He lit up every room he walked into with his cheeky smile. He was the best son, grandson, brother and friend you could ever wish to meet.

"He died a hero doing a job he was immensely passionate about. We are so proud of him and everything he's achieved. Words can't describe how sorely he will be missed. Sleep well Liam, you are forever in our hearts."

His girlfriend, Leah Walters, said she would have "an LT-sized hole" in her life forever.



Theo was last month praised by the Ministry of Defence for making 14 finds of hidden bombs and weapons caches in just five months - a record for a dog and handler.

The 22-month-old spaniel, on his first tour of duty in Afghanistan, had uncovered so many improvised explosive devices (IEDs) that his time in the country was extended by a month.

Lance Corporal Tasker praised his dog at the time for his dedication: "I love my job and working with Theo. He has a great character and never tires. He can't wait to get out and do his job and will stop at nothing."

Theo is the sixth British military dog killed in action in Iraq and Afghanista
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PostSubject: Re: Army Dog Handler And Spaniel Repatriated from Afghanistan.   Thu Mar 10, 2011 10:31 am

Lest We Forget

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