Tuesday, 25 July 2017
logo
Up-to-the-minute perspectives on defence, security and peace
issues from and for policy makers and opinion leaders.
        



dv-header-dday
     |      View our Twitter page at twitter.com/defenceredbox     |     

inmemoriam

Rifleman Andrew Fentiman
7 RIFLES

Rifleman Andrew Ian Fentiman from 7th Battalion The Rifles (7 RIFLES, a Territirial Army battalion), attached to the 3 RIFLES Battle Group, was killed as a result of small arms fire whilst on a foot patrol near Sangin in central Helmand province during the morning of 15 November 2009.

Rifleman Andrew Ian Fentiman was born in Cambridge on 29 July 1986. He joined 7 RIFLES as a Potential Officer in 2007 following two years at East Midlands Officer Training Corps. Having volunteered to serve with 3 RIFLES Battlegroup, he completed an assault pioneer course in May before being mobilised in June 2009.


Rifleman Fentiman attended training at the Reserves Training and Mobilisation Centre, in Chilwell before joining A Company 3 RIFLES during Pre-Deployment Training. He quickly proved his mettle, earning high praise from OPTAG training staff for his reactions during a demanding exercise in Norfolk.

In civilian life, he read Mechanical Engineering at the University of Leicester before becoming a regional sales manager for Team Studio Ltd, a software firm based in Huntingdon. He intended to return to his civilian job after he had completed his tour of duty.

Rifleman Fentiman was killed by enemy fire during a foot patrol in Sangin, Afghanistan. The patrol was tasked with interdicting enemy activity and reassuring local nationals. He leaves his parents, Kevin and Lynda, a brother, Adam and a sister, Elizabeth.

Lieutenant Colonel Nick Kitson, Commanding 3 RIFLES Battle Group, said:

"Rifleman Andrew Fentiman was one of the welcome volunteers from our Territorial Army brethren, in this case 7 RIFLES, who have answered the call to come out to Afghanistan with us. It was an honour and a great act of commitment that he chose to accompany us and share the burden.

"A real ambassador for the great British public that supports us so well, he was up for the challenge and gave of himself selflessly. A university graduate, he was something of a novelty to his platoon. Bright and enthusiastic he fitted in instantly. I have infinite respect for the commitment and sacrifice of this brave Rifleman who had so many opportunities ahead of him yet chose first to serve his country and his regiment. He was liked and respected by all and will be sorely missed as he now makes his way home to his family. Our thoughts are with them and all of his loved ones at this most difficult time."

Lieutenant Colonel Paul Uden, Commanding Officer 7 RIFLES, said:

"The loss of Rifleman Andrew Fentiman is a terrible shock to everyone in the Battalion. My thoughts and those of the entire Battalion, are very much with Rifleman Fentiman's family at this dreadful time.

"He was a young man of 23 who played a full role as a TA infantryman, and was a popular and committed member of E Company, 7 RIFLES.

"I spoke to him before pre-deployment training about his hopes for the future and his desire to eventually commission. He went to Afghanistan to gain experience as a first step to achieving his goal of commissioning and I have no doubt that he would have made a very good Officer. He was keen, committed and determined to succeed."

Major Tim Harris, OC A Company 3 RIFLES, said of him:

"Rifleman Andrew Fentiman, or Fen as he was known to us, had been with A Company since June 2009. He joined us during our pre-deployment training in Kent and was instantly liked by all who met him. During our first conversation, it was obvious to me that here was a young man brimming with confidence and oozing with charm.

"Having studied at the University of Leicester he was naturally brighter than the average Rifleman, but he was quickly accepted as 'one of the boys' in 1 Platoon, who good-naturedly ribbed him for being 'posh' as they saw it. In reality, he had no airs or graces. He was prepared to endure the same privations and do the same job as everyone else – and that is why we loved him.

"He made an indelible mark on everyone in A Company; we could all see that he was a man with considerable potential. A volunteer, he was a walking advertisement for all that is fine about our Territorial Army – he signed up to serve his country and perhaps, to seek adventure. But he was a crucial and integral part of the team, I never saw him without a big smile on his face, and we are devastated that he is no longer with us. However, we know that our loss is nothing compared to the loss that will be felt by his family and friends, and I hope that in time they can find a crumb of comfort in the knowledge that he died with his friends around him doing a job he relished.

"Rifleman Fentiman will be sorely missed by A Company, but his loss will only serve to deepen our resolve to succeed in our mission. It will not be easy, but we will take inspiration from his courage. We will never forget his sacrifice."

Major Michael Scott-Hyde, OC E Company 7 RIFLES, said:

"Rifleman Andrew Fentiman was a highly committed member of E Company 7 RIFLES travelling a considerable distance to attend training and setting an example to his fellow Riflemen. His determined and friendly manner ensured that he was a popular member of the Company. His aspiration was to be commissioned, consequently he took every opportunity to develop himself as an infantry soldier in preparation for Potential Officer training and continuing that which he had started, whilst at East Midlands University Officer Training Corps.

"However, he believed that participation in an operational tour would enhance his suitability for Commissioning and he put his civilian career on hold to achieve this. He was so determined to deploy with 3 RIFLES that he completed a challenging Assault Pioneer cadre to ensure his acceptance.

"E Company has a notable record of operational service and we were proud of Andrew when he volunteered to continue that tradition and we are proud of him today. He will be sorely missed by all members of E Company. He was one of ours and he will never be forgotten.

"Our thoughts and prayers are with all those who were close to him, his family, his friends and his fellow Riflemen.

"Swift and Bold"

Lieutenant Ben Heap, 7 RIFLES paid this tribute:

"A likeable young man who had made a clear decision that he wanted to complete an operational tour by committing to train as a Rifleman by giving up his job - on the face of it an unlikely character to become an infanteer, he was very focussed on serving in the army and worked hard to reach the standard required in order to deploy with 3 RIFLES.

"He had a kind, gentle and cheerful manner and showed great consideration for others in everything he did. He was obviously happiest most when working alongside his section in the most challenging of circumstances, while still remaining to be a source of morale in the face of adversity. He died alongside his friends doing a job he loved."

Second Lieutenant Connor Maxwell, 1 Platoon Commander, said:

"I can remember my first talk with Rifleman Fentiman. He was in a bad way after having a really good night out before joining us. This was him all over. Always up for a laugh, a cheery character who always remained upbeat, he simply made it easy for everyone to like him. Although he was not a regular soldier, I only ever saw him as one of us. He was always professional and was a true asset to the platoon. He paid the ultimate sacrifice doing something he loved. I have complete respect for him. My heart goes out to all of the loved ones he left behind."

Serjeant Steven Smith, 1 Platoon Serjeant, said:

"As a Platoon Serjeant, it was my responsibility to get people ready for the tour and even more so for the lads who joined so close before we came here. This included Fen, who had the extra pressure of coming in late and fitting in with the Platoon. From my point of view, it was easy with Fen, because of his enthusiasm and willingness to leave his job to come to Afghanistan with us. Even though Fen's background was different from most, he was always eager to fit in, took all the banter a rifle Platoon dishes out and it did not take long for him to fit in. I have the utmost admiration for him."

Corporal Phillip Cree, Section Commander, said:

"Rifleman Fentiman had only been with me for around 5 months, after making the huge jump from being a civvie to a full time soldier on tour. He found the transition hard at first, but really started to just become one of the lads. He must have had a great passion for this job, after leaving his office chat to be with us. He was always upbeat and provided good morale for the blokes. So long Fen, you will be missed."

Lance Corporal Mathew Davies, Section Second in Command added:

"To come to Afghanistan as a soldier takes courage, to volunteer takes more so. A constant source of morale for the lads, with his cheerful and unique demeanour. He will be sorely missed."

Rifleman Connor McDarby said:

"Fen put the effort in to mix with us all us from day 1. He was always positive even when things were bad. If you asked for help he would always be there for you, and would give his own input and innovation. See you later mate, you will never be forgotten."

Add comment


Security code
Refresh

Latest from icasualties.org

  • AP- Afghan security scrutinized after suicide bomber kills 24
    A Taliban suicide bomber killed 24 people in a horrific early morning assault in a neighborhood where prominent politicians reside, causing residents and analysts to question the government's ability to protect Afghanistan's capital. Another 42 people were injured in the attack that took place during morning rush hour as government employees and students made their way to work and school. Plumes of black smoke were seen billowing skyward outside the entrance to a private high school. Students in nearby dormitories were injured by flying glass.
  • Reuters- Mattis bristles at Pentagon waste of $28 mln on Afghan uniforms
    U.S. Defence Secretary Jim Mattis has criticized Pentagon officials for wasting as much as $28 million by making a questionable choice of forest camouflage-patterned uniforms for Afghan National Army soldiers. The uniform pattern was selected without evaluating its effectiveness when only 2.1 percent of Afghanistan is covered by forests, the U.S. government's top watchdog on Afghanistan said in a report last month.
  • AFP- At least 26 killed in Kabul car bomb claimed by Taliban
    At least 26 people were killed and 41 wounded Monday after a Taliban-claimed car bomb struck a bus carrying government employees through a Shiite neighbourhood in Kabul, raising fears of sectarian violence in the Afghan capital. The assault came as a presidential spokesman said the Taliban also killed at least 35 civilians in an attack on a hospital in central Ghor province over the weekend.
  • VOA- Taliban Captures 2 Districts in Central Afghanistan
    Heavy fighting is raging in central Afghanistan where officials say the Islamist Taliban has captured two key district headquarters and is assaulting government outposts in nearby areas. Insurgents stormed Taywara district in Ghor province early Sunday, after seizing control of the border district of Kohistan in the adjoining northern province of Faryab, according to Afghan and Taliban officials.
  • PressTV- Police search for kidnapped villagers in southern Afghanistan
    Afghan security forces have launched a major search operation for some 30 villagers still missing two days after a mass kidnapping blamed on the Taliban militants in the country’s troubled south. Zia Durrani, a police spokesman in the southern province of Kandahar, said on Sunday that about 30 people were released on July 23 but around 30 others were still missing
  • WaPo- Behind the front lines in the fight to ‘annihilate’ ISIS in Afghanistan
    A recurring rumble of explosions echoes off the barren, boulder-strewn slopes of the Spin Ghar mountains, each ordnance aimed wishfully at redoubts where Islamic State militants are suspected of hiding. Afghan and U.S. special forces listen in on enemy chatter, intercepting dozens of their radio channels. American AC-130 gunships and F-16 fighter jets whir in circles overhead, at low altitude, waiting for strike orders. Soldiers on the ground man the mortars.
  • Reuters- As U.S. weighs Afghan strategy, hopes set on fledgling Air Force
    As the U.S. administration prepares its new strategy for Afghanistan, the Kabul government and its Western allies are working hard to develop an air force that gives government forces the advantage in their war against Taliban militants. The level of equipment, training and assets falls far short of matching the air assets the Americans still maintain in Afghanistan, but billions of dollars are earmarked for the force which is being built up almost from scratch.
  • Pajhwok- NATO says probing airstrike that hits Nangarhar funeral
    Several people were killed and wounded when a drone strike hit a funeral ceremony in Haska Mina district of eastern Nangarhar province on Sunday, an official said. District administrative chief, Sazoli Shinwari, told Pajhwok Afghan News the incident took place in Mariz Kandaw area of the district around 3pm today.
  • rferl- At Least 70 Afghan Villagers Kidnapped By Suspected Taliban Fighters, Seven Killed
    At least 70 Afghans have been abducted by Taliban extremists in a series attacks in southern Kandahar Province, the provincial police and governor’s office say. Abdul Raziq, head of Kandahar provincial police, on July 22 said the attackers kidnapped the villagers from homes along the main highway in the province, later killing at least seven of them.
  • KP- Home » Afghanistan » Taliban’s logistics chief operating between Afghanistan and Iran has been killed Taliban’s logistics chief operating between Afghanistan and Iran has been killed
    An important commander of the Taliban group has been killed during an operation in western Herat province of Afghanistan. The Ministry of Defense (MoD) informed regarding the killing of the Taliban group, stating that Mullah Abbas was the logistics chief of the group in the region.

British military casualties - Editorial policy

In the service of our country.

Eulogies for all personnel killed on UK operations in Afghanistan, Iraq and elsewhere are posted as soon as they have been released by the UK Ministry of Defence. Each eulogy we publish for men down in operations brings a lump to the throat. We are losing the best of the best. Politicians must ensure that, when the newspaper cuttings have faded, their sacrifice has had some meaning, has helped bring about a good result. Anything else would be a waste for which they will be eternally condemned.

There is invariably at least a 24 hour gap between the official release of news of an event and the naming of the dead. This is to allow families to be informed and proper eulogoies to be produced. Occasionally families request no euologies or comment. We abide by guidance we receive on such sensitive matters. We regret that information on those who sacrifice almost as much through grave injury is seldom released by the MoD for operational reasons, and so we are unable to pay tribute.

 

Cookies
We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you continue without changing your settings, we'll assume that you are happy to receive all cookies on the Defence Viewpoints website. However, if you would like to, you can modify your browser so that it notifies you when cookies are sent to it or you can refuse cookies altogether. You can also delete cookies that have already been set. You may wish to visit www.aboutcookies.org which contains comprehensive information on how to do this on a wide variety of desktop browsers. Please note that you will lose some features and functionality on this website if you choose to disable cookies. For example, you may not be able to link into our Twitter feed, which gives up to the minute perspectives on defence and security matters.