Funeral for RAF Afghan hero

THE funeral service of a courageous aircraftman, who was tragically killed while on vehicle patrol in Afghanistan, will be held at Littleham Parish Church.

Kinikki Griffiths, of Colleton Way, was serving as part of the Camp Bastion Force Protection Wing from the Royal Air Force Regiment, when he died in Helmand Province on Friday, July 16.

The service will take place at the church on Tuesday, August 10, at 2pm. Kinikki leaves his parents, Nik and Tracey, and siblings Bianca-Jade, Sammy-Jo and Jake.

His cousin, Louise Barnes, 35, of Hollymount Close, Exmouth, said: “He loved his time in the RAF – it was something he always wanted to do. He was a special person and will never be forgotten.”

Kinikki, who moved to Exmouth three years ago, joined the RAF on February 15, 2009, as a gunner in the regiment.

In July that year, on completion of training and passing out as “Best Shot”, he was posted to Number 1 Squadron Royal Air Force Regiment, where he flourished, earning the respect of his colleagues and peers alike.

He was selected as his flight commander’s signaller and driver, and it was while carrying out these duties that he met his untimely death.

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Wing Commander Paul Weaver Smith, Commanding Officer Bastion Force Protection Wing, said: “Kinikki was the consummate professional gunner and, even at this early stage, had much promise.

“He was serving his country by protecting a key UK operating base and he died while ensuring the security of others and enabling airpower.”