Top right - Private Garrett Chidley, 21, of Cambridge;
Bottom left - Sergeant Kirk Taylor of Yarmouth, N.S.;
Bottom right - Corporal Zachery McCormack, 21, of Edmonton, Alta.
The Honourable Peter MacKay, Minister of National Defence and Minister for the Atlantic Gateway, issued the following statement today on the death of four Canadian soldiers and a Canadian journalist in Afghanistan:
"Today I stand with all Canadians as we mourn the loss of four brave and selfless Canadian soldiers and one Canadian journalist who died after the vehicle they were riding struck an Improvised Explosive Device (IED) while on patrol in an area south of Kandahar.
I extend my deepest sympathies to the family and friends of Sergeant George Miok, Sergeant Kirk Taylor, Corporal Zachery McCormack, and Private Garrett William Chidley who were killed yesterday while working to bring peace and security to the people of Afghanistan. My thoughts are also with the loved ones of Michelle Lang who was also killed while bravely risking her life to report on the important work Canadians are undertaking. Canadians have a much better understanding of what we are accomplishing in Afghanistan as a result of the risks journalist like Ms. Lang take to bring the story back home to Canada. For this we are all grateful. We also want to wish a steadfast recovery to those wounded during this incident.
Canada is in Afghanistan at the request of the democratically elected Afghan government and as part of an UN-mandated, NATO-led mission. Canadians will always stand proudly behind the brave men and women of the Canadian forces, and our partners, as they courageously risk their lives every day towards our goal of a stable, strong and peaceful Afghanistan.
Their sacrifice inspires those who will follow in our commitment to this mission and for this, the Government of Canada and all Canadians will remain forever grateful.”