Thursday, July 15, 2010

Marine Matthew Harrison killed in Afghanistan

It is with regret that the Ministry of Defence must confirm that Marine Matthew Harrison from 40 Commando Royal Marines, serving as part of Combined Force Sangin, was killed in Afghanistan on Tuesday 13 July 2010.

During the early evening of Tuesday 13 July 2010, Marine Harrison's unit, Charlie Company, was conducting a joint reassurance patrol with the local Afghan National Army, south of Patrol Base Seylab Doo.

At 1805 hrs local time, the patrol was engaged with small arms fire. Marine Harrison was mortally wounded in the attack. He was evacuated to Camp Bastion Role Three Hospital where he died of his wounds.

Marine Matthew Harrison

Marine Matthew Harrison was born on 14 July 1986. He had three brothers, David, Steven and James, and lived in Hemel Hempstead, Hertfordshire.

He joined the Royal Marines on 16 February 2009, aged 22. Impressing from the outset, Mne Harrison was awarded a diamond in recognition of being one of the top recruits.

Passing for duty as a Royal Marines Commando on 30 October 2009, he was awarded the King's Badge. The King's Badge is awarded to the best all-round recruit of the most senior Recruit Troop in training, only if he is worthy of the award.

On completion of training he joined 40 Commando Royal Marines (40 Cdo RM), based at Norton Fitzwarren, near Taunton. Joining Charlie Company in November 2009, Mne Harrison immediately conducted Mission Specific Training for Operation HERRICK 12. In April 2010, he deployed to Afghanistan and was based at Forward Operating Base Sabit Qadam.

Marine Matthew Harrison's parents, Brian and Janette Harrison have made the following statement:

"Matthew was a quiet, warm-hearted guy, absolutely dependable. He was boundless in energy, someone who couldn't do anything in just half measures. He was greatly loved and will be greatly missed."

"Matt was unique, full of character and full of life, always up for a challenge. He was passionate about being a Marine and serving out on the front line. He died doing what he said he ‘needed to do'. Behind the marine, Matt had a sensitive soft heart; a precious, loveable son. Life is precious; only God knows how precious Matt was."

Lieutenant Colonel Paul James, Commanding Officer 40 Commando Group, Combined Force Sangin, said:

"Marine Matt Harrison was brilliant in every sense; as a Royal Marine he was the consummate professional, and in personality he was irrepressible; always wearing his trademark beaming smile.

"His courage and enthusiasm inspired so many people. I knew him to be a man who was entirely selfless, loyal and dedicated. A King's Badgeman, a Spartan, a hero, he was by every measure the model Commando who was always there at the front. He died on patrol in central Sangin, tragically on the eve of his 24th birthday, but he died with pride, doing the job he loved and amongst his band of brothers, his friends who will love him forever.

"He was a young, bright and deeply impressive marine who had an inevitably promising career cut all too short. Our thoughts and prayers are with his parents, his brothers, his family and his friends. He was truly one of life's great men and he will be sorely missed by all in 40 Commando. Marine Matt Harrison was, and always will be, a Royal Marine Commando."


  1. such a tragic waste of a talented young man, my sympathies to your family and friends and personnel in your unit,

  2. RIP Matt

    I went to school with you although you dont know me that well,you were so brave

    My heart goes out to all his family and friends