Soldier killed in bomb blast is laid to rest

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A FUNERAL for one of three Penicuik-based soldiers killed last month by a roadside bomb in Afghanistan has been held at Canongate Kirk.

Mourners paid their last respects to Private Robert Hetherington, 25, who died with Corporal William Savage and Fusilier Samuel Flint when their Mastiff armoured vehicle hit an improvised explosive device on a routine patrol in Helmand on April 30.

Pte Hetherington was born in the US but raised and educated in Scotland. He enlisted in the Territorial Army in October 2006 and was mobilised to join The Royal Highland Fusiliers, 2nd Battalion The Royal Regiment of Scotland, for Operation Herrick 18 last November.

Commanding officer, Lieutenant Colonel Robin Lindsay, previously described him as epitomising “everything that is excellent about the reserve forces”.

He said: “Private Bobby Hetherington was a thoughtful and humorous soldier who was always quick to find the fun in army life. He was gregarious and open and this made him a much-liked and respected member of his platoon and the battalion.”

The military funerals of Cpl Savage, 30, from Irvine, Ayrshire, and Fusilier Flint, 21, from Blackpool, Lancashire, are set to take place next week.