Cumbria

Crowds attend serviceman funeral

Sgt David Monkhouse
Image caption Sgt Monkhouse was a "father figure" to his younger colleagues

Hundreds of mourners have paid their respects to a Cumbrian serviceman killed in Afghanistan.

Sgt David Monkhouse, 35, died in an explosion in the Nahr-e Saraj district of Helmand Province on 17 July.

Friends and family of the father-of-one packed St Kentigern's Church in his home town of Aspatria, with the service also relayed to people outside.

A lone piper followed his coffin, which was carried by pallbearers from his regiment, The Royal Dragoon Guards.

Sgt Monkhouse, a medical technician, was described as a "man mountain" who acted as a father figure to younger troops.

His family said the Army was his life, second only to his daughter, describing him as a loving and devoted parent.

Lt Col James Carr-Smith, his commanding officer, said he was devoted to his young daughter, Daisy-Twinkle.

"He talked of her incessantly," he said.

"She will be distraught and devastated by her father's death but she can be hugely proud of her father, for he was a great man."

After the service, three volleys were fired and a bugler played the Last Post and Reveille, as the coffin was lowered into the ground.

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