Killed Medic Returns Friday From Afghanistan

Paramedics and the family of the latest Canadian soldier to die in Afghanistan will gather at CFB Trenton on Friday afternoon.

Cpl. Michael Starker was a Calgary-based medic and paramedics from across the region are expected to attend the repatriation ceremony along with Defence Minister Peter Mackay. The 36-year-old reservist was the 83rd Canadian soldier to die in Afghanistan. He died Tuesday in southern Afghanistan when his patrol came under fire during an ambush.

Starker is survived by his wife Nicole, his parents Gunther and Helen and sister Carolyn.

His family issued a statement saying: "Mike loved being a paramedic with Calgary EMS and loved being a soldier in the Canadian Forces, especially his time in the Canadian Airborne Regiment."

"Michael died doing what he loved. In his heart, he was a soldier and in his blood, a paramedic. But soldiering wasn't the only thing that Mike gave his heart to. He gave his heart and soul to his wife, parents, family and friends."

It was Starker's second tour of Afghanistan and he was eager to go last February.

Lt.-Col. Roger Scott, commanding officer of 15 Field Ambulance, says Starker had been putting his name in for just about every deployment opportunity that had come up in the past few years and so when the people did get chosen he was really happy to be going.

In Calgary, the Canadian and regimental flag outside the office of 15 Field Ambulance is hanging at half mast.

Additional information