On Thursday 19th April 2007 Kristen Turton was driving a Scimitar Armoured Reconnaissance vehicle which was providing protection for a convoy in Maysan Province, Southern Iraq.
At about 11.20am the vehicle was struck and badly damaged by an improvised explosive device attack, which killed both himself and the vehicle commander, Ben Leaning. The Scimitar's gunner and two other members of the troop were injured.
Kristen Turton’s wife, Sharon, said:
"Kris always told me he lived for two things – me and the Army. I am proud he has died doing something he loved so much. He was the most amazing person I have ever met and I loved him with all my heart and soul as he loved me. He was kind, generous and was always able to make everyone smile with his brilliant sense of humour. He always walked with dignity and he will never walk alone."
Trooper Kristen Turton was from Grimsby. He was 27 when he died. Joining The Queen's Royal Lancers in the summer of 2003, he quickly became a Regimental character. He went through the conversion to Formation Reconnaissance in 2004 and was marked out for specialist training due to his dismounted skills. He was a trained sharp shooter and assault pioneer, specialising in demolitions. These were roles he excelled in and were very much a measure of his professionalism and martial skill.
Despite all of his military success, Trooper Turton felt his finest achievement was his marriage to Sharon, in October 2004, of whom he was tremendously proud.
Major Charlie Ball of The Queen's Royal Lancers said:
"Trooper Kristen "Turts" Turton quickly established himself as one to watch for the future. Keen and committed he showed his true worth throughout this operational tour. He worked tirelessly for his friends and was very much a rock in his troop giving sound advice and guidance to the new and inexperienced soldiers. He was a quiet man with a wonderfully dry sense of humour. My thoughts are very much with his wife and family."
His Commanding Officer Lieutenant Colonel Richard Nixon-Eckersall said:
"Trooper Turton was an exceptional soldier. Selfless and committed he strived for perfection in everything he did. He quickly made an impression as a future NCO and I was particularly pleased with how he had embraced the dismounted aspect of our job. Our thoughts are with his wife Sharon and all of his family. His loss will be keenly felt across the Battle Group."
Corporal Kev Hough, a close friend of Trooper Turton who worked in the same troop said:
"Turts was a great guy to have in the troop. He was always eager to get stuck in and his Driving and Maintenance skills were particularly good. He was the self appointed troop chef and made a point of ensuring that everyone else had their food and a brew before he looked after himself, which was typical of his attitude.
"He was keen to get on in the Army and was hoping to get promoted later this year. He liked playing a joke and having a laugh, and was well liked throughout the squadron. Turts was also a real family man as well and often spoke about his wife Sharon and his plans. His death is a real loss to the troop and our thoughts are with his wife and family."