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Last Updated: Thursday, 21 February 2008, 23:10 GMT
Afghan blast Royal Marine named
Corporal Damian "Dee" Mulvihill (Pic: MoD)
Cpl Mulvihill was the 89th British military fatality in Afghanistan
A Royal Marine killed in a blast in southern Afghanistan has been named by the Ministry of Defence as Cpl Damian "Dee" Mulvihill from Plymouth.

Cpl Mulvihill died on patrol with 40 Commando Royal Marines, north of Sangin in Helmand province on Wednesday.

His commanding officer, Lt Col Stuart Birrell, described the 32-year-old's death as a "devastating blow".

His fiancee and family said: "He was so loved by the whole family... and we will all miss him forever."

Cpl Mulvihill's death takes the number of British military fatalities in Afghanistan since the start of operations in November 2001 to 89.

Afghan deployment

The fatal explosion took place when the marines were taking part in an operation to disrupt the Taleban.

Cpl Mulvihill was pronounced dead at the scene, and another marine was injured but described by the MoD as "walking wounded".

A statement by Cpl Mulvihill's fiancee and family said: "He was so loved by the whole family, he never had a bad word to say about anyone and always looked for the good in people.

"He was a son, a brother and uncle in a million, and a soul-mate to Lisa, and we will all miss him forever."

The 40 Commando Royal Marines are halfway through a six-month deployment to Afghanistan.

'Outstanding leader'

Earlier this week, members of the same regiment helped save the lives of two Afghan children who were injured in a rocket attack by enemy insurgents.

Col Birrell said: "The loss of Cpl Mulvihill is a devastating blow for his family, his friends and his unit.

"An outstanding junior leader, he was immensely popular in both his company and the wider Commando unit.

"A charismatic man, he possessed an irrepressible sense of humour and would always be found with a broad smile on his face, regardless of the challenges or difficulties that he was facing.

"As a marine, he epitomised the Commando spirit."

The MoD described Cpl Mulvihill as a "true character".

His death comes at a time of increasing tensions over the Nato mission in Afghanistan.

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