Lance Corporal Andrew Jones remembered
3 June 2011
A quiet soldier who enjoyed being with his mates, and who was always there for his team, is how Lance Corporal Andrew Jones was remembered by his ADF comrades in Afghanistan overnight.
Lance Corporal Jones was tragically shot and killed in an incident at a Combat Outpost in the Chora Valley region on Monday, 30 May 2011.
A moving memorial service held at Multi-National Base Tarin Kot on Thursday (2 June 11) was attended by Lance Corporal Jones’ friends from the Force Support Unit – Four (FSU-IV) and Mentoring Task Force – Two (MTF-2), coalition colleagues and Afghan National Army partners.
The Commanding Officer of FSU-IV, Lieutenant Colonel Ron Armstrong, said Lance Corporal Jones was an Army cook doing what he loved best.
“Looking after one’s mates in the field is a great honour and that was what Andrew was doing. Andrew was regarded as a true gentleman who was always there for his mates. He was a very well liked member of the team,” Lieutenant Colonel Armstrong said.
“While Lance Corporal Jones will be dearly missed, the FSU-IV soldiers will honour his efforts and sacrifice by remaining committed to the task.”
The Commander of Australian forces in the Middle East, Major General Angus Campbell, said Lance Corporal Jones was an excellent example of the modern Australian digger.
“Lance Corporal Jones was a cook who loved his job. He thrived in environments where he was helping his mates. He chose to take the challenge of working in a patrol base and he underwent additional weapons and other training to be part of the small, tight-knit teams that support our troops in Uruzgan province,” Major General Campbell said.
“The fact that he was as happy sharing a joke with his mates as he was being in his own company sums up the quintessential Australian soldier – adaptable, approachable, hard-working and good humoured.
“The death of Lance Corporal Jones is a loss to his loving family and our sincere thoughts are with them during this difficult time. But we should take comfort that Lance Corporal Jones will be remembered for the good things that we do as individuals and as a team,” Major General Campbell said.
“Without the efforts of Lance Corporal Jones and the hundreds of people like him, we would not be able to exist as a modern military. The efforts of people like Lance Corporal Jones often go unrecognised, but they are much loved and respected for their contribution and our farewell of Andrew today demonstrates how deeply his loss will be felt.”
Following the memorial service, Australian, ISAF and Afghan Natioanal Army troops lined the road to farewell their fallen comrade from Afghanistan in a traditional ramp ceremony.
Lance Corporal Jones’ casket was placed onboard a RAAF C-130 aircraft and taken to the major Australian Support Area at Al Minhad Air Base in the UAE. He is now under the watchful guard of fellow Australian soldiers until he commences the next leg of his final journey home over the next few days.
Australian and Afghan forces continue the search for man suspected of killing Lance Corporal Jones.
Pool vision will be available from the ABC at Parliament House.
Imagery is available at: http://images.defence.gov.au/fotoweb/Grid.fwx?archiveId=5003=&search=20112964