Remembering the Fallen: on this day in 2006, Lieutenant Tom Tanswell, 58 (Eyre's) Battery, 12th Regiment, Royal Artillery, died as a result of injuries sustained in a road traffic accident near Shaibah Logistics Base, southwest of Basra City.
Before joining the army, Lieutenant Tanswell had studied Management and Marketing at the University of Manchester. He commissioned into the Royal Artillery in 2004, successfully completed the Young Officers’ Course and was posted to 12th Regiment Royal Artillery as Troop Commander. At the time of his death he was a Multiple Commander, responsible for twelve men manning three vehicles. He is remembered by colleagues as enthusiastic, laid-back, approachable, cheerful, and willing to try his hand at anything.
Major Marcus Tivey said: “Tom was an immensely enthusiastic young officer, who embraced life with a vigour which inspired those around him. He had planned a future for himself in the Army and was due to be promoted early next year. He was applying for a flight grading, with a view to becoming a helicopter pilot. Tom was a fine officer, who always looked out for his men. Prior to deploying to Iraq Tom had been praised by his superiors on numerous exercises, and while on operations he had made his mark as a rising star. The mark of the man was his boundless energy and infectious sense of humour, and he would often make the best of a situation with a well-selected, witty film quote. Tom was an unforgettable character who we were privileged to have served with. The Army and the Regiment have lost a fine young man, and the Battery has lost a good friend. All who knew Tom were touched by his zest for life; it is tragic that he should have died so close to the end of his tour.”
Tom, from London, was 27 years old.