Tuesday, February 05, 2008

The Fallen: Cpl. Etienne Gonthier

Friends and family of the latest Canadian fatality in Afghanistan are paid their last respects at a funeral Sunday, February 3rd, at St. Georges-De-Beuces, south of Quebec City.

Cpl. Etienne Gonthier from St-Georges-de-Beauce was killed by a roadside bomb on Jan. 23.
The 21-year-old was on his first foreign mission and was due to return from his stint in Kandahar in March.

He had just been promoted to corporal from sapper, but the news didn't have time to reach him before he died.

On Saturday his brothers in arms saluted the man, called Jelly bean by friends, for his commitment to the military.

"He's the kind of guy that always did his best with conviction and that was taking care of others," Sgt. Jean-Francois de Wolfe told all-news channel LCN.

"No matter our living and working conditions, Etienne never complained. He was always in good spirits. That's what I'll remember," Cpl. Philippe Arvisais also told LCN.

Gonthier was the 78th Canadian soldier killed in Afghanistan since the mission began in 2002. He would have turned 22 yesterday.

I offer my sincere condolences to his family and friends. May he rest in peace.

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