Remembering the Fallen: on this day in 1973, Bombardier Heinz Eric Pisarek and Gunner Joseph “Steve” Brookes, 156 Inkerman Battery, 94 Locating Regiment, the Royal Artillery, were killed in Northern Ireland.
On the day of their deaths they were on duty at the top of the Rossville flats in the Bogside, Londonderry - they were fired upon by gunmen coming out of the lift and using some residents of the building as cover. A soldier who was immediately on the scene found Gunner Brookes shot in the head and already dead; Bombardier Pisarek was shot in the back and died before reaching Altnagelvin Hospital. He had survived a previous attempt on his life at the time that Gunner Robert Curtis was killed in Belfast in 1971, when the bullet intended for him hit the battery pack of his radio.
Heinz was popular and remembered for his tremendous sense of humour. From Celle in Germany, he was 30 years old and married with two children.
Steve was relatively new to the regiment, and already well-liked. one colleague referring to him as a “switched-on lad”. From Walsall Wood in Staffordshire, he was 20 years old.