Marine Luke Ireland

Marine Luke Ireland

A Royal Marines officer has revealed the Commando who died in Glen Clova last week was hoping to become a Mountain Leader.

Luke Ireland’s body was found following a massive search when he was reported missing after failing to return from a run around Loch Brandy.

Police have formally confirmed that the body found in the Cairngorms national park was that of Marine Ireland, a member of 45 Commando.

His commanding officer today paid tribute to the 20-year-old, saying he was an exceptional Commando.

Lieutenant Colonel Dan Cheesman said: “We are deeply shocked and saddened by the early death of Royal Marine Luke Ireland in the mountains of Glen Clova on Friday 14 November.

“Although every effort was made by Tayside Police, five mountain rescue teams, three rescue dogs, search helicopters and 250 Royal Marines and Army Commandos, the rescue attempt, in appalling weather, was unsuccessful.

“I am truly humbled by and grateful for the selfless actions of all those who took part, reacting with such great speed and incredible professionalism.

“Marine Ireland, from Monifieth, Angus, joined the Royal Marines in September 2012. On completion of training he was drafted to 45 Commando Group, based in Arbroath near his home town.

“He excelled in his role as a general purpose machine gunner, revelled in taking part in 45 Commando’s recent exercise in California and was looking forward to deploying to Belize to conduct jungle training in the New Year.

“He hoped to qualify as a Royal Marines Mountain Leader.

“Luke’s insatiable sense of humour, enthusiasm, popularity and moral courage made him an exceptional Royal Marines Commando. He will be forever remembered.

“His loss is a significant blow to 45 Commando and the Royal Marines.

“Our thoughts and prayers are with Marine Ireland’s family and friends at this difficult time.”

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