Page last updated at 20:46 GMT, Friday, 13 June 2008 21:46 UK

Two dead British soldiers named

Private Jeff Doherty and Lance Corporal James Bateman
The two men were on a routine patrol

Two British soldiers killed in southern Afghanistan have been named by the Ministry of Defence.

Lance Corporal James Bateman, 29, and Private Jeff Doherty, 20, were from 8 Platoon of C (Bruneval) Company, 2nd Battalion the Parachute Regiment.

They were patrolling on foot near their base in Helmand Province when they came under Taleban fire on Thursday.

Last Sunday, three other soldiers from 2 Para, based in Colchester, Essex, died in a suicide attack in Helmand.

Sunday's attack had taken to 100 the total number of British service personnel killed in the country since the start of operations in November 2001.

On Friday, floral tributes and messages were left at the entrance of the garrison.

And crowds gathered outside the town hall and held a two-minute silence, while a Union flag flew at half-mast.

We will never forget the bright sparkle in his eyes and the way he could light up a room with his smile
Family of Jeff Doherty

Pte Jeff Doherty, known as Jeff, was born in Coventry and lived in Southam, Warwickshire.

He joined the Parachute Regiment in March 2006 and his deployment to Afghanistan was his first operational tour.

In a statement, his family said: "JJ was such a wonderful son. He was the light of our lives and we all loved him.

"He was a hero to his brother and sisters and they loved him dearly.

"We will never forget the bright sparkle in his eyes and the way he could light up a room with his smile."

Pride

Lance Corporal James Bateman, known as Jay, grew up in Staines, Middlesex, and supported West Ham.

He lived in Colchester with his wife Victoria and had previously served in Northern Ireland and Iraq.

I would like the lads to carry on the work he was doing
Wife of James Bateman
His wife said in a statement: "I would like you all to know how immensely proud we are of him and all that he has achieved.

"I know how he loved the Parachute Regiment and I draw comfort from the fact that he died doing the job he loved, for the country he loved, with the friends he loved.

"He was a loving husband, brother, son and uncle. I would like the lads to carry on the work he was doing. I love him and will miss him greatly. He was our hero."





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