Falkirk soldier in Iraq dies in mystery incident

A Falkirk army officer, who was married with two children, died in a mystery incident on Wednesday at the Al Asad Air Base in Iraq.

The death of Captain Dean Sprouting from Denny, who was with the Adjutant General’s Corps, is today still under investigation.

The Ministry of Defence says it was not caused by enemy action.

Captain Sprouting, pictured, was serving with the Black Watch, 3rd Battalion, Royal Regiment of Scotland, whose commanding officer, Lt Col Rob Hedderwick, has paid fulsome tribute to his memory.

He said: “It is hard to do justice to a man such as Dean Sprouting with simple words.

“In no time at all he had become an indispensable part of the battalion, not only for his professional expertise but also for his compassionate manner and camaraderie.

“His intelligence and sharp wit was apparent from the outset.

“There was an ever-present twinkle in his eye and he would gladly admit that his youth had been full of adventure.

“Dean was simply one of those people whose infectious humour and enthusiasm drew others to him.

“His professional knowledge was second to none and his sage advice already something I had come to rely on.

“His loss is keenly felt by us all and our thoughts and prayers are with his wife and children whom I know he cherished more than anything else in this world.

“I am hugely proud and thankful to have known him. He was a very good man.”

Warrant Officer Class One Tam Millsip, Visiting Warrant Officer, 51 Infantry Brigade said: “Dean’s warm, personable nature was never diluted while conducting his duties and those who he had dealings with were always left smiling after Dean imparted his unique wisdom and outlook on life.

“Dean was a tremendously entertaining man to be around. He would bring a great deal of joy and laughter to those around him often at the expense of himself.

“There was never a boring day spent with Dean and my thoughts go out to his family at this very sad time”.