Canadian Forces Pte. Tyler William Todd, 26, was killed on Apr. 11, 2010 by an improvised-explosive device blast southwest of Kandahar City.
Wherever he went in Kandahar, Pte. Tyler William Todd dragged around the blanket his parents made for him, regardless of how much teasing and abuse he took from fellow soldiers. It was no doubt a comforting reminder of home and a life left behind.
Todd, who was killed on the weekend by a powerful roadside bomb just outside a hardscrabble village south of Kandahar city, went home for the final time Monday, a few weeks ahead of the end of his tour. Todd was a member of 11 Platoon, Delta Company from the 1st Battalion of the Princess Patricia’s Canadian Light Infantry, based in Edmonton. His death brought to 142 the number of Canadian soldiers who have died as part of the Afghan mission.
Two civilians — diplomat Glyn Berry and journalist Michelle Lang — have also been killed since the mission began in 2002. More than 1,500 Canadian and NATO soldiers attended a ramp ceremony Monday at Kandahar Airfield to bid farewell to Todd, described by those who knew him as a best friend, a brother and the glue that bound together 11 Platoon. The hole left by his death was painfully obvious Monday as the buddy with whom Todd spent the better part of two years paid tender tribute to his compatriot. “Whenever you were sad or tired, just not feeling right that day — grumpy — Todd would come out. He always cheered you up,” said Pte.
Christian Winter, 28, who choked back tears as he spoke. “I really wish he was still here, but he isn’t. I’m just happy I got an opportunity to get to know him. You don’t meet people like that every day.” Winter repeatedly used the words “honour” and “privilege” to describe knowing Todd, who