Remembering the Fallen: on this day in 2011, Colour Serjeant Kevin Charles Fortuna, A Company, 1st Battalion, the Rifles, was killed in Afghanistan. He had been leading a patrol when he died as a result of an IED explosion in the Sayedabad Kalay area of the Nahr-e Saraj (South) district of Helmand province.
Educated at Bourneside Comprehensive School in Cheltenham, he joined the army when he was sixteen years old, and became a junior leader in the Gloucestershire Regiment in 1991. He went on to serve in Northern Ireland, Yugoslavia, Kosovo and Iraq. He was known for his tremendous experience, intellectual approach along with his notably calm manner, and was held in great esteem within his battalion.
Major Jason Durup, 42 Commando, Royal Marines, said of him: “I liked Colour Serjeant Fortuna instantly, as did everyone who met him. A towering individual he was an unassuming, proud and professional Rifleman who displayed all the qualities one would expect from someone about to be promoted to Warrant Officer: determination, unselfishness, courage, leadership and cheerfulness in adversity. This ethos was recognised and shared by the Royal Marines Commando colleagues with whom he lived and fought side by side. It was obvious his men were devoted to him and that there was a special bond between them; a strong identity that comes from being a small group of Rifleman operating in an isolated check point. This loss will be felt so deeply by Riflemen and Royal Marines alike.”
Kevin, from Portsmouth, was 37 years old and married.