A 26-year-old security guard from Rhondda in south Wales has been killed by a roadside bomb in Iraq.
Christopher Butcher joined the Army when he was 17
Former Army commando Christopher Butcher from Tylorstown, died while protecting passengers in a convoy of vehicles in Baghdad.
Mr Butcher was in the lead vehicle when the bomb exploded, killing him and a passenger.
His parents Philip and Denise Butcher said he always wanted to be a soldier, and was a "hero to the family".
They said their son had joined the Army when he was 17.
He later transferred to the Commandos where he and won a coveted Green Beret seeing action in Ulster, Kosovo and Bosnia before leaving to become a full-time bodyguard.
Mr Butcher was carrying out duties for Aegis Defence Services, a private security firm, when he was killed on 11 October.
His body was flown back to the UK on Tuesday and funeral arrangements are being made.
His parents were on holiday in Tenerife when they were told of his death.
Speaking to the local paper, the Rhondda Leader, Mr Butcher said: "I am grief-stricken and also angry at the moment.
"We have lost a son we adore who was a decent Rhondda boy. It is a futile war, although Chris was an adventurer and loved the job he was doing."
Mrs Butcher, told the paper: "Everyone adored Chris. He came home as much as he could and we loved to have him here."
His father also added: "He loved the adventure, he could never have worked in a factory or an office.
"He was a hero to his family who lost his life in a futile war, although he loved the job he was doing."
A spokesperson for Aegis said: "This news is of great sadness to the company and our sympathies and condolences are with his family, friends and colleagues at this tragic time."