Private Craig Barber, 2nd Battalion, the Royal Welsh Regiment
Remembering the Fallen: on this day in 2007, Private Craig Barber, 2nd Battalion, the Royal Welsh Regiment, was killed by small arms fire in Basra City, Iraq. He had been taking part in a night operation to counter fire attacks on Basra Palace.
Private Barber had joined the army in 2004, and was on his second tour of Iraq. At 6’4” he is remembered as a gentle giant, a happy and lively man who adored his family, and as someone completely trustworthy who would do his best for his fellow soldiers.
Lieutenant Colonel JFP Swift MBE said: Craig was a dedicated soldier who was keen to deploy on operations in support of his mates, and earlier this year had qualified as a Team Medic in order that he was better able to do so. He had also recently qualified as a Warrior driver and he had never been happier. It appeared that he had found his role. He loved his vehicle and looked after it diligently. He was fiercely protective of it and would never let anyone else drive it. Why? Because he understood how important a fully functioning vehicle is to operations in Basra, and that it was his responsibility. If it worked it would save lives; if it broke down he would be putting his mates’ lives at risk. He was justifiably proud of the part he played in the Platoon and wanted to do it to the very best of his ability. This was characteristic of a man who was very professional, courageous and who never wanted to let his comrades down. Craig had taken part in the whole spectrum of operations on this tour. He had patrolled by day meeting the locals in rural areas, he had secured cordons on detention and search operations, and he had helped escort convoys to sustain other soldiers in the Brigade. Craig died as he lived; working for others and helping to protect them.”
Craig, from Ogmore Vale in Wales, was 20 years old and married with a three-year-old son.