Saturday, 13 August 2022
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Corporal McCarthy, Royal Air Force, was born into a Service family on 18 February 1987 in Hannover Germany. At a very young age he returned to the Midlands of England where he attended Lilleshall Primary School and Orleton Park School in nearby Wellington. He was staunchly proud of the area and apart from the early years of his life, Priorslee, Telford was where he called home. On Saturday 12 May 2012, Corporal McCarthy, with Lance Corporal Davies, deployed as part of a Police
Advisory Team to attend a meeting at the local Afghan Uniformed Police headquarters near Patrol Base Attal in the Lashkar Gah district of Helmand province. Their commanding officer attended the meeting whilst the remainder of the team provided security. It was at this point that they were attacked with small arms fire and both Corporal McCarthy and Lance Corporal Davies were shot and fatally injured.

Following school Brent McCarthy worked in a number of jobs before committing himself to a Service life with the Royal Air Force in August 2008. Following his training at RAF Halton and the Defence College of Policing and Guarding at Southwick Park he began his career within the Royal Air Force Police. He was a man of many talents and diverse interests including football, playing drums in a band and representing the RAF at hockey.

He was assigned to RAF Brize Norton in July 2009 where he volunteered to
deploy with 174 Provost Company, 3rd Regiment Royal Military Police as
part of the Theatre Provost Group. During his pre-deployment training
Corporal McCarthy showed an aptitude for mentoring and was a natural
choice to embed with the Welsh Guards as part of the Police Mentoring
Advisory Group.

Corporal McCarthy leaves behind his father John, mother Sarah, sister
Jodie, his partner Sarah and his niece Miajay and nephew Kyron.

Corporal McCarthy's family have paid the following tribute:

"Brent was a loving sensitive young man. He excelled at sport and had
the whole world in front of him. He loved his family dearly and will
always be a hero to his niece Miajay. Brent will be sadly missed not
only by us but also by his loving partner Sarah and her devoted family.
Life will never be the same for any of us. We will love you always. God

Lieutenant Colonel Dino Bossi, Commanding Officer Police Mentoring and
Advisory Group, 1st Battalion The Welsh Guards, said:

"Corporal Brent McCarthy came to 1st Battalion Welsh Guards during our
training for Operation Herrick 16. Over a six-month period before the
tour began he lived and operated with the men who he was to support in
Afghanistan. His intelligence, ready wit and his desire to muck in and
take part in all aspects of communal life meant that he fitted
seamlessly into an extremely tight team. Corporal McCarthy was extremely
popular and hugely respected among the men with whom he lived and fought
- not always an easy trick for a military policeman from another
Service, but one he achieved with ease and some style. Ever to the fore
and sharing danger and discomfort, his light-hearted approach to life,
easy going nature and cool professionalism made him a natural advisor to
the Afghan National Police. On 12th May, alongside his comrade Lance
Corporal Lee Davies, he was taken from us suddenly and violently. All of
us in the Police Mentoring and Advisor Group, whether Welsh Guards,
Royal Military Police or RAF are devastated by his loss but resolved to
press on in the memory of his sacrifice. To his family we extend our
heartfelt sympathies and the knowledge that he will always be remembered
among us."

Lieutenant Colonel Alex Potts, Commanding Officer, Combined Force
Lashkar Gah, said:

"Corporal Brent McCarthy was doing a difficult and dangerous job and he
did it well. He was a fine ambassador for The Royal Air Force and we
will remember him for his professionalism, physical toughness, but above
all, for his unbeatable smile and sense of humour."

Major Greg Sangster, Commanding Officer, Theatre Provost Group, said:

"It is difficult to put into words what the loss of Corporal McCarthy
means to both our unit in Afghanistan and his RAF Police colleagues back
in the UK. But our grief will pale in comparison to that felt by his
family and friends and our thoughts are with them at this difficult
time. Corporal McCarthy exuded enthusiasm and ability; he was a young
man who was trying to make a difference, mentoring his Afghan Police
colleagues in very challenging conditions. Both his unit and those
Afghans he mentored are better for having known this talented

Squadron Leader Carl Jeffery, Officer Commanding 7 (Royal Air Force
Police) Squadron, Royal Air Force Brize Norton:

"Cpl Brent McCarthy was fiercely loyal and courageous, exemplifying the
character of the Royal Air Force Police. Cpl McCarthy was a young man
with huge potential: intelligent, determined and extremely capable, he
was a highly popular figure within his Flight and was firmly on the path
to great success in his career. Cpl McCarthy fully embraced all aspects
of Service life, whether representing the RAF playing Hockey or getting
his mates together for a beer, he was always a prominent figure who will
be sorely missed by his friends, his colleagues and all those who had
the honour of serving with him. Dynamic and with an enormous sense of
fun, Cpl McCarthy's infectious enthusiasm could be relied upon to cheer
those who were down, to inspire those who were lost and to comfort those
in despair. It is great testament to Cpl McCarthy's character that
despite a few brief years in the Service, he can claim so many friends
amongst his Trade, his Station and the RAF as a whole. Cpl McCarthy's
family and friends should take great comfort in the knowledge that Brent
was an exemplary policeman of whom they should be proud."

Captain Rob Bird, B Squadron Second in Command, Combined Force Lashkar
Gah, The King's Royal Hussars, said:

"On behalf of B Squadron, The King's Royal Hussars, I would like to
convey our heartfelt condolences to the family of Corporal McCarthy. An
extraordinary character, he had become exceptionally close to a large
number of the Squadron over the last few weeks. He maintained an
unfaltering sense of duty throughout his time with the Police Advisory
Team. Utterly professional, he was an exemplary airman who was
absolutely committed to the task his unit had been set with the Afghan
Uniformed Police, who as we, are deeply saddened by his death. Our
thoughts are with Corporal McCarthy's family at this most difficult

Warrant Officer Class Two Daniel Stephens, Company Sergeant Major,
Theatre Provost Group, said:

"Having worked previously with the RAF Police, Corporal McCarthy
surpassed my already high regard for the commitment, dedication and
capability of those RAF Policemen who volunteer to undertake this most
difficult of roles alongside their Army brethren. In the short time that
I came to know Corporal McCarthy he showed courage, grit and leadership
far beyond his years. His personality endeared him to all those around
him and he embodied the very spirit of our motto, leading by example. I
am truly honoured to have served with him and regrettably humbled by his

"I am saddened beyond words at the loss for his family and loved ones
who have my most heartfelt thoughts."

Staff Sergeant Terrance Ferguson, Platoon Staff Sergeant, Theatre
Provost Group, said:

"Coming from the same town of Telford there was an immediate connection
between Corporal McCarthy and me. His sharp sense of humour and
enthusiasm for a bit of banter was always welcomed and was a breath of
fresh air. During his time under my command he acted with the utmost
professionalism, respect and embodied all of the qualities of an
outstanding Service Policeman. At this very difficult time I would like
to extend my condolences to his family and loved ones and my thoughts
are with them. Rest in peace my friend."

Sergeant Rob Heath, Second in Command Police Advisory, Number 2 Company,
1st Battalion Welsh Guards, said:

"Corporal 'Mac' McCarthy was a true professional in every respect. He
joined our Police Advisory Team a few months before our deployment. It
was as if he had always been with us as he immediately got on with
everyone. He was an excellent ambassador for his unit as his skills and
knowledge on police work seemed endless. He was very intelligent and
loved his job. All who knew Mac will be feeling a great sadness right
now none more so than his family. Our thoughts go out to you all. The
Welsh Guards his extended family will remember him forever. Rest in
Peace Mac, gone but never forgotten."

Corporal Kriss Gray, RAF Police, Afghan Police Mentor, Theatre Provost
Group, said:

"Having known Corporal Brent McCarthy for some time now, both as a
friend and a close work colleague, this comes as a massive shock, to
those who served with him and the Service police as a whole. Corporal
McCarthy always put others before himself and had the strongest love for
his family and would always go out of his way to see a smile on others
faces before his own. I had the honour to have served with him and I am
also very privileged to have been his friend.

"My thoughts go out to his girlfriend and family at this time; he will
be greatly missed by all who knew him."

Lance Corporal Tim Bennett, Adjutant General's Corps (Royal Military
Police), Afghan Police Mentor, Theatre Provost Group, said:

"Although I have only had the pleasure of knowing Corporal Brent 'Mac'
McCarthy since the start of our training last year and having lived and
worked so closely together here, I feel l got to know him very well.

"Brent and I were told early on that we would be Police Mentors within a
Police Advisory Team with the Welsh Guards. We conducted all of our
training with the team working really well and building very close
friendships with the boys. There was always banter about the amount of
time "Paradigm" Mac spent using welfare facilities and he used to check
the incoming mail at least 3 times a day! Funny thing is, he rarely came
back empty handed.

"Brent will be sorely missed and my thoughts are with his family and
girlfriend at this sad time."

Lance Corporal Kyle Williams, Combat Medical Technician Police Advisory
Team, Number 2 Company, 1st Battalion Welsh Guards, said:

"Although Mac wasn't attached to us for long, he was well and truly one
of the boys. He loved the banter and also loved working with the
infantry. He often said how lucky he felt to be doing this job and how
envious the RAF Regiment would be at him for being so far forward!

"Mac, you were one of the boys and we will always remember you."

Guardsman Jo Price, Police Advisory Team, Number 2 Company, 1st
Battalion Welsh Guards, said:

"I did not have the pleasure of meeting Corporal McCarthy until he was
attached to us just over a month ago. In the short time that I got to
spend with Mac we developed a very close bond, both out on patrol and in
the Patrol Base chilling out. Mac was a tremendous man, with a heart of
gold and loved by everyone. He will be deeply missed, but never
forgotten. I, and the rest of the Team will ensure that we finish the
job that we and Mac came out here to undertake. He will forever be in
our thoughts."

Latest from

British military casualties - Editorial policy

In the service of our country.

Eulogies for all personnel killed on UK operations in Afghanistan, Iraq and elsewhere are posted as soon as they have been released by the UK Ministry of Defence. Each eulogy we publish for men down in operations brings a lump to the throat. We are losing the best of the best. Politicians must ensure that, when the newspaper cuttings have faded, their sacrifice has had some meaning, has helped bring about a good result. Anything else would be a waste for which they will be eternally condemned.

There is invariably at least a 24 hour gap between the official release of news of an event and the naming of the dead. This is to allow families to be informed and proper eulogoies to be produced. Occasionally families request no euologies or comment. We abide by guidance we receive on such sensitive matters. We regret that information on those who sacrifice almost as much through grave injury is seldom released by the MoD for operational reasons, and so we are unable to pay tribute.


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