Operations in Afghanistan

Lieutenant David Boyce and Lance Corporal Richard Scanlon killed in Afghanistan

It is with sadness that the Ministry of Defence must confirm that Lieutenant David Alexander Grant Boyce and Lance Corporal Richard Scanlon, both from 1st The Queen's Dragoon Guards, were killed in Afghanistan on Thursday 17 November 2011.

Ministry of Defence crest
Lieutenant David Boyce and Lance Corporal Richard Scanlon (All rights reserved.)
Lieutenant David Boyce and Lance Corporal Richard Scanlon (All rights reserved.)

Both soldiers were serving with the Formation Reconnaissance Squadron. They were on a patrol providing security in the Yakchal region of Nahr-e Saraj in central Helmand when their armoured vehicle struck an improvised explosive device. Tragically, both men were killed in the resulting explosion.

Lieutenant David Boyce (All rights reserved.)
Lieutenant David Boyce (All rights reserved.)

Lieutenant David Alexander Grant Boyce

Lieutenant David Boyce deployed to Afghanistan on 21 October 2011 in command of 1st Troop, B Squadron, 1st The Queen’s Dragoon Guards. After completing his in-theatre training, he moved forward to the Combined Force Nahr-e-Saraj (North) (CF NES(N)) Main Operating Base PRICE, from where his Troop was one of those tasked with securing vital routes passing through the district, as well as supporting ground-holding companies north of Helmand’s second city, Gereshk.

Lieutenant David Alexander Grant Boyce was born on 18 September 1986 in Welwyn Garden City, Herts. He studied International Relations at the University of Exeter before taking a gap year. Lieutenant Boyce joined the Army in September 2009 and commissioned from the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst into 1st The Queen’s Dragoon Guards in August 2010. From there he attended his Formation Reconnaissance Troop Leaders’ Course, immediately followed by the Platoon Commander’s Division.

He joined B Squadron in May 2011 during the early stages of Mission Specific Training, and took command of 1st Troop in July. His reputation as a highly competent, decisive and inspirational young officer preceded him; his reports from both the Troop Leaders’ and Platoon Commanders’ courses were exceptional, and his impact on his new command was immediate and profound. Fit and confident, he was equally comfortable in his Scimitar Armoured Vehicle or on foot.

Lieutenant Boyce was a consummate leader. He was a popular, good humoured member of the Officers’ Mess, an avid skier who was due to assist in the running of the Regiment’s 2012 Winter Sports Team, and was well respected by all ranks. He was also a keen sailor, sailing for the Army Offshore Racing Team during the Rolex Sydney Hobart Race 2010 and numerous other regattas for the RAC and the Army.

He was a man of huge potential but his legacy will endure in the troops he trained and led. Lieutenant Boyce leaves behind a loving family, his father Martin, mother Andrea, sister Charlotte and girlfriend Jodie. His regimental family is richer for his short but accomplished time within its ranks. The Regiment’s thoughts and condolences are with his family and friends at this tragic time.

Lieutenant Boyce’s family have paid the following tribute:

David was honoured to be a Cavalry Officer who embraced military life with a passion. We are immensely proud of all that he achieved in such a short life and take comfort knowing that he died doing what he loved.

He brought sunshine into the lives of all those he knew. David will be dearly missed by his loving family and girlfriend Jodie.

Lieutenant Colonel Jasper de Quincey Adams, Commanding Officer, 1st The Queen’s Dragoon Guards, said:

Lieutenant David Boyce was a charming young officer who, quite simply, represented everything that that is great about the Regiment and British Army. He died while commanding his soldiers on operations in a complex and demanding environment.

He led from the front, setting the very highest standards, and inspired his men and peers alike. Tall, powerful and with an infectious smile he, like so many officers of his generation, was committed to his men and determined to succeed on the operations.

He had the gravitas of one far more senior but maintained the infectious enthusiasm of a young man doing what he loved. His men adored him and showed him the level of loyalty that is reserved for the very best. David had so much to give, so much to look forward to and so many opportunities ahead of him.

The Regiment has been denied one of our best, and a professional commander for the future has been taken from us. But our tragic loss is insignificant compared to that of his family; his mother, father, sister and Jodie all of whom he loved so much. And so to them we offer prayers and our thoughts, and our thanks too, for sharing with us someone so very special. David was a man to walk the mountains with, a man to go to war with, and he will never be forgotten.

Major Paddy Bond, Officer Commanding B Squadron, 1st The Queen’s Dragoon Guards, said:

I met David at the Cavalry Memorial Weekend in May 2011, two days before he formally reported for duty with B Squadron as we began a key part of training for Afghanistan. He struck me instantly as a man of confidence and charm; it was obvious from the outset that he was thrilled to be joining a deploying Squadron and that he relished the challenge ahead of him.

He arrived heralded by several of the strongest training reports I have ever read. Early on he understudied a senior Troop Leader; but he quickly assumed command of 1st Troop in early July and from then on was completely in his element. Thoroughly professional, he demanded high standards from his soldiers. He rewarded them with inspirational leadership and tenacious loyalty.

He took great pains to design realistic and progressively more challenging training for his Troop, fuelled by a passion for excellence and a gripping style. The atmosphere he created was one of quiet confidence. David was a great raconteur, always active in the Officers’ Mess but equally comfortable spending time at work or play with his soldiers.

It is a testament to his leadership that his Troop remained disciplined and utterly professional in the aftermath of the fatal explosion. David’s loss leaves the Regiment missing a true friend and our condolences are with his family.

Lieutenant David Boyce (All rights reserved.)
Lieutenant David Boyce (All rights reserved.)

Captain Simon Mildinhall, Squadron Second-In-Command, B Squadron, 1st The Queen’s Dragoon Guards, said:

I first remember meeting Dave on a cold and windy day in March 2008 when he was on a pre-Sandhurst visit, as the Regiment conducted pre-deployment training for Op HERRICK 9 on Salisbury Plain. There stood a confident and charismatic individual who seemed utterly determined to join the Regiment. As the first of many signs of his commitment and dedication to the job and this Regiment, he achieved his goals and arrived at 1st The Queen’s Dragoon Guards in 2011 where the mess was proud to welcome him.

No words that I can write will convey how much this officer and friend will be missed by all in B Squadron and the wider Regiment. My sincerest condolences go to his family and loved ones at this difficult time and I hope that they can draw some comfort from the fact the David died doing a job he truly loved surrounded by men who loved him.

Captain Richard Chambers, Battle Captain, B Squadron, 1st The Queen’s Dragoon Guards, said:

Boycey, as I will always remember him, was one of the small number of people who can move into an already tight and close group of friends and make an impact. He came to the mess and within a day had become a big name, proclaiming himself ‘Champagne Boycey’ and gaining instant popularity. He was a huge character who you couldn’t help but take an immediate liking to; he was always there smiling and with another tall story to tell.

His character extended beyond his immense affability though, and beneath that charming, slightly cheeky cavalry officer was a talented leader. He excelled at Sandhurst, again at Bovington where he learned his mounted trade, and volunteered to go to Brecon, where again he was at the top of all his peers. He took the reins of 1st Troop confidently, competently and proudly.

Never content with day to day tasks, he was always keen to offer more, knowing that he had an excellent Troop behind him and the ability to lead them. He will be missed by everyone who ever knew him.

Captain David Hoey, Intelligence Officer, 1st The Queen’s Dragoon Guards, said:

Having known Dave for a few years before Army life it was an immensely proud day in my life when he commissioned into 1st The Queen’s Dragoon Guards. He embodied a vitality and cheerfulness that was a pleasure to be around and he combined this with a competence and dedication that I knew would make him an excellent Army officer, with the touch of flair that suited the cavalry to a tee.

He set high standards wherever he went, be it on the Infantry Platoon Commanders’ Course, as a skier, water-skier, sailor or rugby player, in the mess or in the field. He was a good friend in good times and a good friend in hard times. Whilst he was an excellent companion on a night out or an afternoon doing nothing on the beach in Cornwall, he would also be the man you wanted beside you in your foxhole.

Ever generous, highly enthusiastic and, despite being obviously naturally talented, always willing to learn, Dave will be mourned far and wide by an enormous group of friends. My thoughts are with his family Martin, Andrea and Charlotte at this terrible time. Go well, Boycey.

Captain Sarah Howes, Adjutant General’s Corps (Education and Training Services), Education Officer attached to B Squadron, 1st The Queen’s Dragoon Guards, said:

Lieutenant Dave Boyce was an outstanding troop leader; confident, capable and determined. He was ever the professional and led with passion, caring deeply for each and every soldier in his Troop. His death comes as an enormous blow to us all. As well as being a great officer, Boycey was also a great friend. I will miss his company immensely and my thoughts are with his family, friends and girlfriend Jodie.

Stand down, Boycey, your duty is done.

Lieutenant James Lough, 3rd Troop Leader, B Squadron, 1st The Queen’s Dragoon Guards, said:

Boycey was a great soldier, officer and most importantly, a friend. He had only been with the Regiment for a short time but he instantly made an impact in the mess. He was equally popular with his Troop and Squadron where he quickly proved that he was a very capable troop leader with an extremely promising future as an Army officer. He was devoted to his Troop and could always be relied on to keep up spirits. He will be sorely missed but always remembered.

Lieutenant Bryn Williams, 4th Troop Leader, B Squadron, 1st The Queen’s Dragoon Guards, said:

Lieutenant Dave Boyce was one of the finest officers in the British Army. A man with cavalry passion with the highest of professional standards; he led from the very front and demanded excellence from himself and the soldiers he commanded. He excelled in his career; ‘thrusting’ all the way to the top.

Dave was the heart and soul of fun and games in the Officers’ Mess and lived up to his nickname of ‘Champagne Boycey’. He wore his heart on his sleeve and always had time to listen. The best time to catch him would be over a cigarette. His clear approach and level-headed advice was always best heeded.

Dave died doing the job he adored. He was a fellow officer and a brother to us all and I feel honoured to have been able to serve with him. He leaves behind a loving family and girlfriend and I will sorely miss him every day.

I have lost a peer, a friend, a brother. Boycey - stay strong.

Lieutenant Peter Gordon-Finlayson, 2nd Troop Leader, B Squadron, 1st The Queen’s Dragoon Guards, said:

Boycey was the consummate professional Army officer. He was born to soldier and was naturally highly gifted at his job, and loved every minute of it. However Boycey’s real character was more evident out of working hours. His constant torrent of banter is part of the fabric of our lives and it will be very strange to carry on without him; indeed it is very hard to truly believe that he is gone. He considered himself a loveable rogue and that is how I will always remember him, especially on Remembrance Day.

Second Lieutenant Toby Mossop, B Squadron, 1st The Queen’s Dragoon Guards, said:

David Boyce, universally known as ‘Boycey’, was one of those rare, larger than life characters. Whether it was at work, in the mess with a few drinks, or back at home with his friends and family, Boycey was always there, always full of energy, up for anything that sounded fun, and often the life and soul of the party.

Professionally, as his peers, we all knew that he was the best among us. Exceptionally competent and with a genuine love for his job - for him - he was living the dream. Never one to shy away from the limelight, he had many friends, all of whom will miss him hugely - a great soldier, a great friend, and quite simply a great bloke.

Second Lieutenant Michael Groves, B Squadron, 1st The Queen’s Dragoon Guards, said:

Dave Boyce - the personification of ‘never let the truth get in the way of a good story!’ was always ready with a jaw dropping tale about his fantastic (mis)adventuring, and was heartily loved for it! Always relied upon to be ready with a wicked grin and terrible scheme to get everyone into trouble, he was nevertheless always surrounded by mates ready to jump in on his latest crazy expedition.

Full of laughter and mischief, ‘Brecon’ Boycey was usually the centre of attention and a larger than life character in the mess and the Regiment. With his Troop he was the epitome of professionalism and renowned for his quick thinking and tactical awareness, normally coming out with the solution before most had their heads around the problem. A fantastic officer and a great mate, Boycey will be terribly missed and remembered with great fondness.

Warrant Officer Class 2 Robert Mansel, Squadron Sergeant Major, B Squadron, 1st The Queen’s Dragoon Guards, said:

Lieutenant Dave Boyce was an extremely talented young officer who stood out as having the potential to achieve whatever he wanted from his military career. As a troop leader he was in his element. His likable nature, coupled with his professional approach, meant he was instantly loved by the men under his command in a close partnership with his Troop Sergeant, and had the complete trust of his chain of command.

Mr Boyce was a man the boys felt they could trust to lead them and it was easy to see it was because he always had their best interests at heart. He could be found with his boys getting stuck into vehicle maintenance or just having friendly banter on the tank park. On the ground he was exceptionally competent and tactically astute; he did not come across as a young troop leader but one who had experience under his belt.

Lieutenant Boyce was a genuine man who has left a lasting impression in our regimental family. He died doing the job he loved. He was an inspiration to all that had the privilege to know him. He will never be forgotten. My heartfelt condolences go to his family and friends. I am proud to say I had the privilege to have known him.

Sergeant Gareth Ananins, 1st Troop Sergeant, B Squadron, 1st The Queen’s Dragoon Guards, said:

Lieutenant David Boyce was a keen hard working troop leader and a true soldier who led his troop well. He was strong willed and had a great personality with a humour that the boys could relate to. Mr Boyce always had a smile on his face no matter what the situation and took the time to listen to the men he led. We all gained strength from Mr Boyce, and he from us. He had the trust and respect from his men and we will always remember him.

Lieutenant Boyce was a natural leader, a friend, and will be truly missed by all in 1st Troop. Our hearts go out to his family. Gone but never forgotten. Goodbye Sir, rest in peace.

Corporal Rhys Lang, 1st Troop, B Squadron, 1st The Queen’s Dragoon Guards, said:

Lieutenant Boyce was keen to say the least. One of the most professional troop leaders I have ever had the pleasure of working for. Under his command he made sure every single member of the Troop knew what was going on and what needed to be done at every step of the way. He was a natural born leader, truly an inspiration to all and a great loss to everyone that ever knew him. You will be sorely missed.

Corporal Etika Navunisaravi, 1st Troop, B Squadron, 1st The Queen’s Dragoon Guards, said:

I only knew Lieutenant Boyce for a few months and in that short time I can say that I’ve learned a lot from him. It just shows how good he was, not only work-wise but also personally. He was there putting us forward to do our job and when we slipped he would be there to guide us back on route. They say a strong good tree bears a good fruit - that is what I can say about him.

RIP Boss, You were born a true leader and left us as a true leader. Forever in our hearts.

Trooper Adam Beacock, 1st Troop, B Squadron, 1st The Queen’s Dragoon Guards, said:

Lieutenant Boyce was not just a good troop leader, he was a good friend to us all. He was always there for you and would do anything in his power to help you out. He would often join in with us with banter and he gave as good as he got. He was well respected within the Troop and people did things for him, not because of his rank, but because he was like one of the boys. I will truly miss him, as will the Troop. Rest in peace boss, you won’t be forgotten.

Trooper Norman Moore, 1st Troop, B Squadron, 1st The Queen’s Dragoon Guards, said:

Lieutenant Boyce was a great troop leader and friend to everyone in the Troop. He was also an inspiration to everyone with his positive attitude towards everything army-related. I always complimented him to other guys in the Troop by saying we had the best troop leader possible. He was a genuinely nice guy and always saw the best in things. We all enjoyed having him with 1st Troop and he will be greatly missed.

Missing you already boss, regards to family and friends, take care up there we will all see you again sometime. RIP Boss. You gave your today for our tomorrow and it will always be remembered.

Trooper Dan Morris, 1st Troop, B Squadron, 1st The Queen’s Dragoon Guards, said:

Lieutenant Boyce, you were a great commander and an inspiration to the boys. You knew what had to be done, and did it to a tee. You were not only our leader but a friend and always up for a laugh and a joke with the boys. We could not have been given a better commander and no one can fill the space as 1st Troop Leader as you did. You will always be missed and never forgotten.

Trooper Andrew Williams, 1st Troop, B Squadron, 1st The Queen’s Dragoon Guards, said:

I only knew Lieutenant Boyce for a few weeks, but in that few weeks I learned a lot from him. He had a lot of time for the boys and in our short time together I also got to learn that he was the best troop leader I ever had. Because he knew his stuff the boys and I felt good under his command. He will be truly missed as the true leader of 1st Troop, B Squadron, 1st The Queen’s Dragoon Guards. RIP.

Trooper Scott Halpin, 1st Troop, B Squadron, 1st The Queen’s Dragoon Guards, said:

I have known Lieutenant Boyce since he took over 1st Troop and I soon realised that he worked hard for his Troop - if he thought something was worth doing we would do it. He listened to his men and made sure the boys were happy. During my time in the Army he has been the best troop leader I have had. He was funny and good for morale; he will never be forgotten in my eyes and he will be missed by us all. That is all I can say; he was one of a kind. You will be missed boss.

Trooper Lucas Crofton, 1st Troop, B Squadron, 1st The Queen’s Dragoon Guards, said:

Lieutenant Boyce was an excellent troop leader, for the short time I got to work with him I found him to be all about the Troop and someone who looked out for us. His personality as a troop leader was one that everyone wanted and looked for in a leader. He will be missed. Gone but not forgotten.

Lance Corporal Richard Scanlon (All rights reserved.)
Lance Corporal Richard Scanlon (All rights reserved.)

Lance Corporal Richard Scanlon

Lance Corporal Richard Scanlon served with B Squadron, 1st The Queen’s Dragoon Guards. He deployed to Afghanistan on 18 October, 2011 as part of Task Force Helmand’s Formation Reconnaissance Squadron. After completing his in-theatre training, he moved forward to the Combined Force Nahr-e-Saraj (North) (CF NES(N)) Main Operating Base PRICE, from where his Troop was one of those tasked with securing vital routes passing through the district, as well as supporting ground holding companies north of Helmand’s second city, Gereshk.

Lance Corporal Scanlon, from Rhymney, Gwent, was born on 14 November 1980. He joined the Army in November 1998. He passed out of training in October 1999 and joined his Regiment, 1st The Queen’s Dragoon Guards in Catterick. He was known for his fantastic sense of humour; he had the ability to make anyone smile, whatever the circumstances.

Lance Corporal Scanlon deployed to Bosnia in 2001 and Iraq in 2003 and 2005 before deciding to leave the Army in July 2006. After being dissatisfied in a number of civilian jobs he rejoined the Army and the Regiment in September 2009 and was promoted to Lance Corporal in October 2010.

He was a genuine regimental character and will be hugely missed by all who knew him. He leaves behind his mother Cherry, step-father Robert, father Raymond and sisters Lisa and Emma.

Lance Corporal Scanlon’s family have paid the following tribute:

Richard was a fun loving young man who enjoyed life to the full. He had a great love for his family - always helping them out whenever he could when needed.

Richard was a great character and he will be sorely missed by his family and all who knew him. There will never be anyone else like our Richard.

Lieutenant Colonel Jasper de Quincey Adams, Commanding Officer, 1st The Queen’s Dragoon Guards, said:

Lance Corporal Richard Scanlon was one of life’s great characters, always with an infectious smile and a tangible love of life. An experienced soldier, calm under pressure, he was hand picked as the Troop Leader’s gunner on a demanding operational tour. He was a fighting soldier, cracking in the field or on operations, and in camp, his flamboyant character meant he could find fun in any situation. His appetite for the finer things in life was prodigious and had earned him one of the more memorable nicknames - nothing was ever half hearted for Lance Corporal Scanlon!

We will miss him terribly, barracks life will have lost some of its sheen, but our tragic loss is insignificant compared to that of his family; his mother, stepfather, father and sisters Lisa and Emma, all of whom he loved so much. Lance Corporal Scanlon will never be forgotten and our memories of him will forever be cherished.

Major Paddy Bond, Officer Commanding B Squadron, 1st The Queen’s Dragoon Guards, said:

Lance Corporal Scanlon was a seasoned Junior Non Commissioned Officer whose length of regimental service, personality and professionalism meant he was part of the very fabric of 1st The Queen’s Dragoon Guards. He was promoted in October 2010 in recognition of his skill and junior leadership before and during a demanding exercise season in Canada.

It was no surprise when his promotion was accompanied by genuine applause and celebration across the ranks - for ‘Shag’, as he was known affectionately, was a man whose cheerful and hard-working devotion to work and play epitomised the spirit of the Regiment. As an experienced operator he was a natural choice for the responsibility of Troop Leader’s operator.

Not only did he form an integral part of the close-knit team that is a Scimitar turret crew, but he constantly looked out for the welfare of his younger peers. He will be sorely missed, yet his legacy endures in the character of the young soldiers he helped train. Our condolences go to his family and his close friends both in the Regiment and at home.

Captain Simon Mildinhall, Squadron Second-in-Command, B Squadron, 1st The Queen’s Dragoon Guards, said:

Individuals who possess an aura like that of Lance Corporal Scanlon are rare. Without a doubt the Squadron and wider regimental family has lost one of its most vibrant and individual characters. It was a pleasure to have known and served with a soldier who was as buoyant and full of life as he. His name will be forever etched into the memory of those who knew him. My thoughts are with his family and loved ones at this time.

Captain Jon Whelan, Second in Command, A Squadron, 1st The Queen’s Dragoon Guards, said:

Lance Corporal Scanlon, or ‘Shag’ as he was affectionately known, was a relatively senior trooper when I met him in 2002 in B Squadron. He was renowned for always keeping the Sergeant Major on his toes and it was easy to be drawn to his easy smile and open personality.

We moved across to C Squadron in 2003 and deployed together to Kuwait to serve in Iraq. Both in Guided Weapons Troop, the Non Commissioned Officers and I had the honour to watch him change and grow as a soldier through the most challenging of tests as we fought our way up the Al Faw peninsula and into Basra. No matter what was thrown at him (literally!), he always had a smile on his face and an ability to lift spirits.

One of the best shots with anti-tank weapons I have ever seen, his skills as a Squadron barman were also legendary. Our thoughts are with his family and friends, both in and out of the Regiment, at this time.

Warrant Officer Class 2 Robert Mansel, Squadron Sergeant Major, B Squadron, 1st The Queen’s Dragoon Guards, said:

Lance Corporal Scanlon was a first class Junior Non-Commissioned Officer who was extremely well respected by his chain of command and subordinates alike. Always the first to offer help or lend a guiding hand to the boys who worked with him, he was extremely experienced in the job he loved. His calm nature meant he was the one the younger boys came to if they needed help or a problem solved. He approached every task with a smile on his face and that is how I will remember him.

Back at regimental duty in Germany, Richard was the lead at any social event, always accompanied by his trademark smile and distinctive strut. He gave up his spare time running the Corporals’ Mess bar not only for normal events but also welfare and charity events the mess would host. If I wanted something done in the Squadron he was the man I could rely on and trust to get the job done to its fullest in a professional manner.

Lance Corporal Scanlon was like an older brother in our family Regiment. All who have had the privilege of working alongside him will be deeply saddened by his death. His ultimate sacrifice was not in vain and he will never be forgotten by his regimental family. Our deepest sympathies are with his family, especially his nephew of whom I know he was especially proud.

Warrant Officer Class 2 Russel Kimsey, Squadron Sergeant Major, A Squadron, 1st The Queen’s Dragoon Guards, said:

Lance Corporal Scanlon, Shag to all of those who knew him, was in his own league as a soldier and an individual. I had the pleasure of having him as part of my team whilst in the post of SQMS after he re-joined the regiment after a brief spell in civilian street.

Shag was not a storeman at heart and would take it upon himself to sit down and get to grips with any task that was given to him which at times could take the best part of the day. You knew though that it had been done correctly when he would reappear with a wide grin on his face as he would strut back into the office. He did, however, have the uncanny knack of being able to misplace and lose just about anything left in his charge, especially keys which would turn up weeks later in the most random of places.

Shag was probably best known as B Squadron barman, a job he jumped at when offered, and he was responsible for some disgusting concoctions. I will always remember him for his infectious laugh and his bubbly personality which would have us all in tears of laughter whilst telling the tale of what he had got up to over the weekend. I am proud to say that I knew him and will miss his “Got a light, Sir?” every morning. Rest in peace mate.

Sergeant Gareth Ananins, 1st Troop, B Squadron, 1st The Queen’s Dragoon Guards, said:

Lance Corporal Richard Scanlon was a true friend for over 10 years. Whenever morale was down you could count on him to bring it back up again. Be it in camp, on exercise or on tour, he was always at the centre of a good joke and will be remembered for his quick witty banter and giving as good as he got. Richard always had a smile on his face and was an inspiration to his peers and the boys in 1st Troop.

Lance Corporal Scanlon, known to us all as Shag, worked hard and he would always aim to get the task done and endeavour to do that little bit more. As the senior Lance Corporal in the Troop he had the trust and respect of us all and nothing would get him down. We have lost a true friend.

I have lost a good friend but will never forget you. Rest in peace mate.

Lance Corporal Richard Scanlon (All rights reserved.)
Lance Corporal Richard Scanlon (All rights reserved.)

Corporal Gareth Davies, Squadron Headquarters, B Squadron, 1st The Queen’s Dragoon Guards, said:

Lance Corporal Scanlon - my friend. Lance Corporal ‘Shag’ Scanlon was a big part of my regimental life. Like part of the furniture it seems, he’s been with us for that long! Always ready to offer his services if he could help someone out, chatting over a brew, staying late to get work done - he was never scared to get stuck in or get his hands dirty and was always there if you needed him.

If you were to ask him about a tour or exercise you’d been on you could bet he had been there too. You’d be hard pushed to replace such a good friend, such a character - I don’t think there is anyone else quite like him. He was one in a million. I’m going to miss you mate, and I’ll never forget you. Rest in peace.

Corporal Etika Navunisaravi, 1st Troop, B Squadron, 1st The Queen’s Dragoon Guards, said:

Lance Corporal Scanlon was always bringing morale, not only to the troop but to the Regiment as a whole. Well known for the job he does and the funny things he comes up with.

I know right now all the angels up in heaven must be laughing at the things you come up with. OK my brother, rest in peace and keep us laughing. We’ll never forget you, RIP Shag.

Corporal Rhys Lang, 1st Troop, B Squadron, 1st The Queen’s Dragoon Guards, said:

Richard (Shag) Scanlon was one of the best. Ten years ago he was guard of honour at my wedding. After the wedding party Shag and the lads went out in uniform, but little did he know it was Mardi Gras that weekend! Needless to say they had quite the reception. Shag’s response was ‘Cardiff is awesome, everyone’s so friendly here’, oblivious to the fact he was getting hit on! It was pure comedy. Everyone that has ever known Shag has a story to tell, he was an honest, genuine bloke with a love for life and he lived it to the full. Sorely missed but never forgotten. Sleep well mate!

Corporal Dan Morris, 2nd Troop, B Squadron, 1st The Queen’s Dragoon Guards, said:

Richard, also known as Shag, you have been one of my longest friends in this Regiment ever since we joined in 1999. Not only have you been a friend to me but also an adopted family member into mine and Kaylee’s lives. You have brought joy and happiness to all our lives and you will be sorely missed. There will be a void in this Regiment now you have gone, and I think it will be a hard one to fill, especially in the mess.

I think your name will be talked about for years to come as one of the great legends and one the greatest people to be in this Regiment. You will never be forgotten in my family and also that of the wider Regiment. Dear friend, never forgotten. RIP mate.

Lance Corporal James Petre, 1st Troop, B Squadron, 1st The Queen’s Dragoon Guards, said:

Lance Corporal Scanlon, also known as Shag, to those who knew him, will be remembered as a good friend to everyone and always at the heart of any joke or banter. I will remember all the good memories and fun times we have had together, my thoughts go out to your friends and family. Missing you already mate. Rest In Peace Shag.

Lance Corporal Paul ‘Trig’ Trudgill, 2nd Troop, B Squadron, 1st The Queen’s Dragoon Guards, said:

Richard, also known as Shag, not only were you a best friend of mine, you were a friend to my wife Laura and were always there for my son Jack. You would always look after Laura during Squadron functions, so much so that people even started to think you where married to her! I have so many good memories of us together; I will never forget you singing along to ‘Lips’ and power ballads on the X Box - all the time you were a legend. You always had a smile on your face no matter how bad things got.

Things will never be the same again; not going into to your room for a beer and a fag and a game of FIFA (Norwich vs Cardiff). You were a very proud Welshman and very proud of your family especially your nephew, always telling me what he’s up to and the stories of him wearing your gas mask around the house. You were like an older brother to me and I am proud to have known you and to have served beside you. You will never be forgotten in my family or the Regiment and you have a special place in my heart, sleep well dearest friend. PS - Sorry I couldn’t find a Welsh flag for you.

Lance Corporal Adam Priddle, 3rd Troop, B Squadron, 1st The Queen’s Dragoon Guards, said:

Lance Corporal Scanlon, otherwise known as ‘Shag’, to myself and a lot of the boys you are and will always be remembered as a close friend. I have known you now for around six years and you are one of the ones that took me under your wing when I first got to the Regiment. I know I will miss the good times. I hope you now rest in peace and always look out for us and your friends as you always have done. Goodbye mate. You might have gone but you will never be forgotten by your good friend.

Trooper Norman Moore, 1st Troop, B Squadron, 1st The Queen’s Dragoon Guards, said:

Lance Corporal Scanlon (Shag) will always be remembered. He was a well liked individual in 1st Troop, always brought morale to the boys on a bad day and kept guys smiling and laughing alongside him. I’ve had many good times with you Shag and the memories will always be here with me. Missing you already, you will never be forgotten. Look after yourself up there, see you again some time.

Trooper Dan Morris, 1st Troop, B Squadron, 1st The Queen’s Dragoon Guards, said:

Lance Corporal Scanlon, you will be remembered as you lived, without worry and to the full and will truly be missed. You were one of the first people I got to know in B Squadron when I first arrived and made me feel welcome. You are a huge loss to me and everyone else who has ever known you. RIP mate, your friend, Dan.

Trooper Andrew Williams, 1st Troop, B Squadron, 1st The Queen’s Dragoon Guards, said:

Lance Corporal Scanlon, known to the boys as Shag - he will be remembered to me as a legend in my eyes. He loved a joke. To me he was my ‘grand-dad’. He will be dearly missed; my thoughts are with his friends and family. RIP Shag.

Trooper Adam Beacock, 1st Troop, B Squadron, 1st The Queen’s Dragoon Guards, said:

Lance Corporal Scanlon or Shag, was more than a mate to us; he was like family. He was always there to make you smile when you were down and was always at the heart of the fun. Shag would always be there if you needed help and would go out of his way to help you out. Shag was the life and soul of the week-end and you could always count on him to have a good night out.

I will truly miss you Shag, life will not be the same with out you but I know that you’re up there in heaven, in a bar looking down on us. Rest in peace mate.

Trooper Scott Halpin, 1st Troop, B Squadron, 1st The Queen’s Dragoon Guards, said:

Richard was my flat senior back in Germany and we were in the same Troop. I have been friends with him since he joined back up. He was an amazing mate and I can’t believe he has gone. He loved an occasional drink and was fun to be around and so much morale. He hated that I used to beat him on ‘Singstar’ especially as he thought he was a pro. He was a mate and like family, he is going to be missed so much.

I am so proud to have served with you in 1st Troop. It is like a sheep has been taken out of the flock. RIP Shag (a true Welsh man).

Trooper Lucas Crofton, 1st Troop, B Squadron, 1st The Queen’s Dragoon Guards, said:

Shag, what can I say that his friends and family don’t already know about this awesome guy? It was an honour to have known and to have worked alongside him. He will be missed. Gone but not forgotten.

Trooper David Lawley, Squadron Quarter Master Sergeant Department, B Squadron, 1st The Queen’s Dragoon Guards, said:

Richard was a very good friend of mine, even though I have only known him for about a year I knew that we would be life long mates! Richard was always smiling and always up for a laugh, even when things were not going his way he still tried to keep morale up. I can’t put into words how much we will all miss him; he was a top bloke and a very good friend. There will always be a beer waiting for you at the bar. RIP Shag, A true 1st The Queen’s Dragoon Guards legend.

Defence Secretary Philip Hammond said:

I was very saddened to learn of the deaths of Lieutenant David Boyce and Lance Corporal Richard Scanlon. It is clear from the warm tributes paid by their colleagues and commanders that both men were liked and respected in equal measure.

They have made the ultimate sacrifice in defence of Britain’s national security, and that will never be forgotten. My thoughts and deepest condolences are with the two families, as well as the many friends and colleagues, at this difficult time.

Published 18 November 2011