Sergeant Jonathan Mathews, 4th Battalion, The Royal Regiment of Scotland
Remembering the Fallen: on this day in 2008 Sergeant Jonathan William Mathews of The Highlanders, 4th Battalion, The Royal Regiment of Scotland, died in Afghanistan. He was attached to 1st Battalion The Royal Irish Regiment Battle Group, serving as a mentor and trainer to the Afghan Army. He had been on a joint foot patrol with the Afghan Army helping to protect Afghan Police in a town near Lashkar Gah, when they were warned by local civilians that Taliban fighters lay ahead. As the patrol went to investigate, he was struck by a single shot - he was evacuated to Camp Bastion but sadly could not be saved. Sgt. Mathews had joined the army at the age of 21 and was quickly singled out as a man with significant potential; he was selected for training as a sniper and a reconnaissance soldier, and served in Northern Ireland, Bosnia and Kosovo before moving to the Infantry Training Centre in Catterick as a recruit instructor. He was a natural choice for the job of mentor and trainer in Afghanistan. This from Lieutenant Colonel Jamie Campbell: "The death of Sergeant Jon Mathews has come as a great shock to the Battalion. A hugely popular man, he was a fine senior non-commissioned officer who loved his job and cared deeply about those in his charge. An experienced field soldier and a simply superb trainer, he rose quickly up the ranks. He always led from the front, inspiring others to follow and with his operational background and determination to make a difference, was ideally suited to the demands of Helmand province. An absolute professional, he was courageous, reliable to the core and unwaveringly loyal to all." Jonathan, from Edinburgh, was 35 years old and married with a daughter and stepson.