Former Lympstone RM officer dies after plane crash

PUBLISHED: 11:33 24 May 2011

Lt Orlando Rogers RM on left and Capt Ben Gaffney RM on the right, in happier times.

Lt Orlando Rogers RM on left and Capt Ben Gaffney RM on the right, in happier times.


Tributes have been pouring in for former Lympstone Royal Marine Orlando Rogers, 26, who died in hospital after a crash in a Tiger Moth aeroplane.

THE man who died after a recent plane crash in Dorset was an ‘inspirational’ former Royal Marine who trained at Lympstone Commando Training Camp.

Orlando Rogers, 26, from Poole, was a passenger in a friend’s Tiger Moth when it got into trouble at around 1,500 feet, coming down in a field near Witchampton on May 15.

He was airlifted to Dorchester Hospital but died less than six hours later at 8.45pm, with his mother, Julia, by his side.

Mrs Rogers paid tribute to her son, saying he had been ‘immensely special’ to all who knew him.

“His unique charisma, positive outlook and enthusiasm for life touched and inspired all those around him,” said his mother. “His death leaves an unfillable void for his family and many friends and colleagues.

“His example on living life to the fullest will never dissipate; whether it was rowing the Atlantic, racing Zap Cats, sky diving or skiing.

“He died as he lived – in action. He was always cheerful, full of fun and the spirit of adventure.”

Mr Rogers joined the Royal Marines after completing his A-Levels at Torquay Boys’ Grammar School in September 2003.

He lived at Lympstone while he trained and later, when he was based with 42 Commando, he commuted from Torquay.

At his passing out, aged 19, Mr Rogers became the youngest Marines Officer for five years.

He served with the Royal Marines for six years as an officer and was the Troop Commander for the Falklands 25th anniversary parade.

He was deployed throughout the world including operational tours in Northern Ireland and Afghanistan.

Within a year of leaving the Royal Marines, Orlando had set up a successful business in maritime security, employing many of his former comrades based in Poole.

In 2007, he and fellow Marine Ben Gaffney spent more than 30 days rowing 3,000 miles across the Atlantic in a 24-foot boat in a record-breaking attempt to raise funds for CLIC Sargent and the Royal Navy Benevolent Trust.

Their efforts were filmed for an ITV documentary Go Commando.

Mr Rogers leaves his sister Jade, an 85-year-old grandmother, and his girlfriend, Kathryn.

Their record-breaking attempt, raising funds for CLIC Sargent and the Royal Navy Benevolent Trust, was filmed for an ITV documentary Go Commando.

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