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Last Canadian killed in Afghanistan honoured in Alberta

Last Canadian killed in Afghanistan honoured in Alberta
WATCH ABOVE: A monument in Lacombe, Alta., is being unveiled to commemorate the last Canadian soldier killed in Afghanistan. Kim Smith reports.

A monument in Lacombe, Alta., is being unveiled to commemorate the last Canadian soldier killed in Afghanistan.

Master Cpl. Byron Greff, serving with the 3rd Battalion Princess Patricia’s Light Infantry, was killed in October of 2011 when a vehicle full of explosives hit his bus.

READ MORE: Body of Master Cpl. Byron Greff repatriated at CFB Trenton ceremony

The 28-year-old was born and raised in Lacombe, near Red Deer.

“We are honoured to call Byron a Lacombian,” Mayor Steve Christie said. “He was a true Lacombian. I remember as a kid he was never scared of anything.”

A demilitarized Light Armoured Vehicle (LAV) III has been turned into a monument in Fairview Cemetery’s Field of Honour.

Former members of the 3rd Battalion Princess Patricia’s Canadian Light Infantry, who worked alongside Greff attended the dedication ceremony on Saturday.

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“Byron and I met in the battalion, both when we first got in. You kind of come up through the ranks together,” retired corporal Maury Gratrix said. “I had a good relationship with Byron.”

During the ceremony, Gratrix and Greff’s wife Lindsay placed a wreath at the bottom of the LAVIII, which is meant to not only honour Greff, but also the services and sacrifices of all Canadians during the Afghanistan mission.

“I think (the monument) means a lot for the Afghan veterans including myself,” Gratrix said.

“Simply because there’s a lot of sacrifices made in Afghanistan and it’s a great way to ensure sacrifices that are made over there aren’t forgotten.”

From 2001 to 2014, more than 40,000 Canadians served in Afghanistan.