Monday, June 1, 2009

Lance Corporal Nigel Moffett killed in Afghanistan

It is with great sadness that the Ministry of Defence must announce that Lance Corporal Nigel Moffett from The Light Dragoons was killed in Afghanistan on Saturday 30 May 2009.

Lance Corporal Nigel Moffett
LCpl Moffett was born in Holywood, Belfast, on 12 December 1980. He joined The Light Dragoons in July 2003 and served on operations with Regimental Headquarters in Iraq in 2003 and C Squadron (The Legion) in Iraq in 2005 and Afghanistan in 2006.

From the very beginning he showed an enthusiasm for soldiering that stood him apart from his peers. Keen to try his hand at everything, LCpl Moffett ran, boxed, cross-country skied, hill-walked and played rugby with the regiment.

He was very much a regimental character, particularly due to his love of extreme physical challenges. He would routinely choose to carry the heavy General Purpose Machine Gun (GPMG) on endurance marches instead of his rifle. He carried his enthusiastic nature into the Corporals' Mess, where he could be relied on to be at the centre of any revelry.

In September 2008, LCpl Moffett volunteered to join the Brigade Reconnaissance Force (BRF) for 19 Light Brigade, as the brigade began preparing for Operation HERRICK 10. The BRF is selected from across all of the units from the brigade and acts as the eyes and ears of the commander.

LCpl Moffett quickly established himself as the fittest member of the unit. A Physical Training Instructor, he was responsible for running much of the subsequent BRF fitness training. He brought to the BRF knowledge of mobility procedures and long range communications and previous operational experience.

This helped mould the BRF through seven arduous months of pre-deployment training, where LCpl Moffett showed his natural leadership and physical and mental robustness on many demanding exercises.

His performance on the Live Firing Test Exercise, conducted in Otterburn in January 2009, was nothing short of outstanding. In the worst environmental conditions, LCpl Moffett was fierce and relentless; attributes which he would call on more than once in the coming months.
The BRF deployed on Op HERRICK 10 in early April 2009 to Helmand province. LCpl Moffett was immediately at the forefront of the action as the driver of one of the lead vehicles in his troop.

He fought bravely in many engagements with the enemy, beginning with an advance against an enemy stronghold on 23 April. On 15 May, his troop was pinned down by heavy machine gun fire; LCpl Moffett rose to the challenge and mounted his GPMG on a rooftop, returning fire and giving his troop the breathing space to win the firefight.

On 30 May, LCpl Moffett was taking part in an operation in Musa Qaleh, scouting a route for his troop, when he was killed in action.

LCpl Nigel David Moffett will be remembered by the BRF and The Light Dragoons as a tough, brave soldier who was an excellent member of the team from the outset.

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