Friends and colleagues remember Light Dragoon Sergeant Lee Davidson as “a great bloke, a great leader and a great soldier”

Friends and colleagues have paid tribute to Sergeant Lee Davidson of the Light Dragoons after he was killed by a roadside bomb in Afghanistan on Sunday.

Sgt Davidson, who was based at the Robertson Barracks in Swanton Morley, near Dereham, was described as a doting father to his two boys, Jayden and Jamie, and a devoted husband to his with Samantha, who is expecting their first daughter.

One of his best friends Sergeant Mark Bowman said: 'I've known Lee since I joined the Light Dragoons in January 2000, however, it wasn't until 2006, whilst we were on mission specific training for our first tour of Afghanistan that we became really good friends. We served together until 2009, when he was posted to Harrogate as a training non-commissioned officer.

'On returning to the regiment, he joined A Squadron where we served together as troop sergeants.

'Lee was, without doubt, the most loyal friend anyone could hope to have. If ever I or any of his other friends needed help, day or night, he would be there. He was a great husband to Sam and an outstanding father to his two young sons, Jamie and Jayden.

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'Davo, I am extremely proud to be one of the few to call you my best friend. You will never be forgotten and your spirit will live on through your three children. You gave your life and served your country so that others could be safe.

'Your family, your friends and all who knew and served with you are proud to have been part of your life. You will never be forgotten mate.'

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Major Dom Alkin, Company Commander, The Inkerman Company, 1st Battalion Grenadier Guards, said: 'I will remember Sgt Davidson as a friend and comrade who enjoyed the respect of his subordinates and commanders alike. His role in theatre was supporting the Afghan police, helping them to plan operations which often involved capturing narcotics and detaining insurgents.

'He also worked hard to ensure that their commanders delivered them the pay and equipment they required. He was committed to making a difference to the lives of the policemen that he supported, always earnest in his mentoring, always doing his best with the less than perfect Afghan system.

'It was to his credit that he never lost faith in his ability to make a difference despite the challenges that would have overwhelmed other men. His optimism is what I will most remember him for – his belief that the Afghan police are capable of delivering a better future to the Afghan people.'

Lieutenant Ed Whitten, Troop Leader, Police Advisory Team, Police Mentoring and Advisory Group, The Light Dragoons, said: 'Sgt Davidson was a great bloke, a great leader and great soldier. He was professional in all that he did and he loved his job.

'He achieved success in his career with relative ease and it was an honour and a privilege to have worked so closely with him. My greatest testament to him was that he always put the boys first.

'Our thoughts are with his family whom he talked about endlessly, particularly his wife Samantha and two young boys.

'We will miss him greatly and his example and enthusiasm will be remembered by all and will keep our troop going until we all go home. Davo, we are truly grateful.'

Warrant Officer Class 1 David Rae, Regimental Sergeant Major, The Light Dragoons, said: 'As a man, Davo was liked by everyone, peers, superiors and subordinates; he was easy to be around; you enjoyed spending time with him. There was no agenda, only a down to earth, level headed, happy, fun, chatty, articulate and intelligent Yorkshireman; and he cared about all the right things.

'His family were generally in the conversation and he doted on his wife and children. He looked upon his troop in almost equal measure and his troop knew it too.

'As a soldier, he made his mark in a very unassuming manner; this was very typical of Davo. He didn't follow anyone else's particular approach to his trade as a recce soldier; he just did it as a professional and without feeling the need to highlight his achievements.

'Davo didn't do 'flash' but you knew that regardless of his 'under the radar approach' he always produced, and he produced without guidance or prompt. He was utterly reliable in all he did; the perfect senior non-commissioned officer you could say. He has been like this since he was a young Trooper.'

Major Will Leek, The Royal Scots Dragoon Guards, Squadron Leader, the Brigade Reconnaissance Squadron said: 'Sergeant Davidson was a regimental character who was utterly respected and immensely popular across the full spectrum of ranks.

'I had only recently got to know Sergeant Davidson and hadn't had the pleasure of soldiering with him for long. What I saw was a man with a credible past, an optimistic present and a very promising future.

'He had risen through the ranks through hard graft and producing results. He had earned and commanded respect. His devotion to his young family was clear for all to see. Our thoughts are with Sam and the boys at this incredibly difficult time.'

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