Remembering the Fallen: on this day in 2011, Lieutenant Oliver Augustin and Marine Sam Alexander MC, 42 Commando Royal Marines, were killed in Afghanistan. An IED exploded as they were on patrol in the Loy Mandeh area of the Nad ‘Ali district in Helmand province.
Lieutenant Augustin's C.O. paid this tribute: "Lieutenant Augustin was a Troop Commander with considerable potential and a bright future. Despite only passing for duty a matter of months ago, he had made a considerable impact within Juliet Company and across the Unit. A charismatic young man, with a keen sense of humour, he was the life and soul of any gathering and he touched all those who had dealings with him. As a leader he was inspirational, passionate and selfless, putting the welfare of his men above all else - they adored him and looked to him for direction, but looked on him as a brother in arms. As a Marine he was utterly professional, dependable and tactically astute. At the time his life was tragically cut short he was characteristically leading from the front, taking the fight to the enemy; his audacity, commitment and courage clear for all to see. 42 Commando have lost a brave, young warrior." Oliver, from Kent, was 23 years old.
Marine Alexander's C.O. paid this tribute: "Marine Alexander was a truly remarkable young man. Decorated during his last tour of Afghanistan for gallantry, he embodied all the finest attributes of a Royal Marines Commando: he was courageous, selfless, resolute, loyal and cheerful in the face of adversity. The loss of such a professional and well respected Marine comes as shocking news; he was a larger than life character and leaves a gap that cannot be filled. He inspired those around him to reach the highest possible standards and in doing so was an exemplary role model for those younger and less experienced than himself. He led by example and from the front and would have unquestionably had a promising future in the Royal Marines ahead of him. Sadly this will not be realised as his life has been tragically cut short. Instead, Marine Alexander now joins the legends, the bravest of the brave, who inspire us all forever with their courage, dedication and sacrifice; his memory will endure." Sam, from Hammersmith, was 28 years old and married with a baby son; he had served with Sergeant Alexander Blackman.