An Army engineer killed in an accident at Camp Bastion will be repatriated to Oxfordshire on Thursday.
Sapper Adam Moralee, from 32 Engineer Regiment, was an “outstanding soldier” who had been marked for promotion, his commander said.
The 23-year-old was from Newcastle and was due to be promoted to lance corporal later this year. He was killed on Wednesday last week at the Afghanistan base.
The aircraft carrying Sapper Moralee’s body is scheduled to arrive at RAF Brize Norton at 1pm with the ceremony taking place at 2.30pm.
- On Thursday any changes to the timings will be posted on our Repatriation Information Page.
RBL members will gather at the Memorial Garden in Monahan Way, Carterton, and in Headley Way to pay their respects.
Sapper Moralee, jokingly known as “Massive” to his colleagues in reference to his slight frame but love of bodybuilding, was preparing engineer plant equipment for redeployment when he was killed.
A statement from his family said: “Adam was a loving son, fiancé and friend who touched everyone’s hearts that came into contact with him.
“As a son, he was full of life and always the joker of the family, who never took anything too seriously.
“He loved his job and the friends he made from his time in the Army and he would never have swapped those experiences for the world.”
Lieutenant Colonel Steve Davies RE, Commanding Officer 32 Engineer Regiment, said: “Quietly determined and utterly dedicated, Sapper Adam Moralee was an outstanding soldier.
“An armoured engineer through and through, he proved himself on both the icy prairies of the British Army Training Unit Suffield in Canada and the IED-riddled deserts of Afghanistan on Operation Herrick 14, clearing safe lanes in his beloved Trojan [armoured vehicle].
“In his second operational deployment to southern Afghanistan, he worked as a combat engineer – toiling hard in both the heat and the snow to ensure that the force was protected from the elements and the enemy threat, and then working in support of the redeployment effort.”
Corporal Matt Mackay, Armoured Section Commander, 26 Armoured Engineer Squadron, 32 Engineer Regiment, said: “His love of Newcastle United was legendary, despite being utterly un-coordinated at the game himself.
“He was loved by everyone around him and was definitely a star of the future.
“The only thing that rivalled his friendship with Lance Corporal Crosbie was his love of his fiancée, Emma.
“She put a look in his eye of pride, achievement and true happiness.
“The most genuine person I have ever met, it has been a pleasure to know him and to serve with him.”
The chairman of the Royal British Legion in Oxfordshire, Jim Lewendon, said: “We will have a presence, as always, and count on the support and goodwill of the Oxfordshire public.
“The repatriations have slowed right down recently, and like a lot of people we will be glad when they are over. We never thought in 2008 when we started that we would still be here now, with so many lives sadly lost, but we will be there until the end. We will always continue to do what we can to support the families, and will again be present on Thursday.”