Gratitude of soldier's grieving father

A HADLEIGH soldier's father has sent a message of thanks to all those who have supported his grieving family after his daughter was killed in Iraq.Staff Sergeant Sharron Elliott, who grew up in Hadleigh, died on Remembrance Sunday when a bomb hidden under a bridge exploded near her patrol boat on the Shatt al-Arab waterway in Basra City.

A HADLEIGH soldier's father has sent a message of thanks to all those who have supported his grieving family after his daughter was killed in Iraq.

Staff Sergeant Sharron Elliott, who grew up in Hadleigh, died on Remembrance Sunday when a bomb hidden under a bridge exploded near her patrol boat on the Shatt al-Arab waterway in Basra City.

The news of her death led to her father, Ted, and his wife, Ann, being sent numerous letters of sympathy.

Mr Elliott, from Hadleigh, said: “Ann and I would like to say a huge thank you for all the cards, letters of condolences, and kind words of sympathy following the untimely death of Sharron in Iraq.

“At this difficult time it is comforting to know that she meant so much to so many of you.”

Staff Sgt Elliott, a member of the Intelligence Corps, had only been in Iraq for one week when she was killed along with three colleagues, Warrant Officer Class 2 Lee Hopkins, 35, and two Royal Marines, Marine Jason Hylton, 33, and 27-year-old Corporal Ben Nowak. She was the second servicewoman to die in the conflict.

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Mr Elliott said she would be “sorely missed” and asked that his family now be left to grieve.

He said of his only daughter: “We loved her so much and losing her has left a big gap in our lives.

“She was a wonderful person and, whilst we cannot replace her, her memory will live on.”

Born in Ipswich, Staff Sgt Elliott was educated at Hadleigh Primary School and Hadleigh High School before moving to South Shields, in Tyne and Wear.

She joined the Army at the age of 18 and spent the early part of her career in the Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers. She transferred to the Intelligence Corps six years ago.

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