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Ranger Justin Cupples RIP

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  • Ranger Justin Cupples RIP

    Ranger Justin Cupples, aged 29, was killed early on Thursday 4th September 2008 whilst on a foot patrol in Sangin town, northern Helmand. Whilst moving through the town with 7 Platoon, Ranger Company, 1 R IRISH, an improvised explosive device detonated at 0710 hrs, severely injuring Ranger Cupples rendering him, and an interpreter, unconscious. Despite immediate life saving attempts by his colleagues, Ranger Cupples was pronounced dead 15 minutes later. His body was swiftly repatriated to CampBastionHospital where Father Ian Stevenson administered absolution and anointed the body.
    Ranger Cupples was born in the United States on the 29th July 1979. He served with the US Navy during Operation Iraqi Freedom. His family lived in Miami before moving to Co. Cavan in the Republic of Ireland, where he met his wife Vilma. He began training in ITC Catterick in February 2007. On completion of his training he joined The 1st Battalion The Royal Irish Regiment and in September 2007 he was posted to 7 Platoon C Company and fitted in immediately.
    Known as ‘Cups’ to his friends, Rgr Cupples went to Kenya and took part in Ex Grand Prix where he performed outstandingly from the outset. He immediately showed himself to be a strong soldier who would never give up, no matter how hard the task. During the Op HERRICK 8 pre-deployment training, Rgr Cupples showed he had a gift for languages and was an obvious choice for the Operational Language Training Course. Here he developed his skill for Pastu and used this to great effect on all patrols - often the platoon was able to deploy without an interpreter as he was more than capable of communicating with the local nationals.
    Rgr Cupples was a quiet but well spoken individual, enthusiastic and very mature. Motivated and showing all the fine characteristics typified of Irish soldiers, Rgr Cupples was a popular member of Ranger Company and impressed his commanders from the start. He was well known to his comrades as a team player who always put others before himself. He was a proud member of Ranger Company and a great friend to us all. Rgr Cupples will be sorely missed by his commanders and comrades alike.
    LtCol Ed Freely, Commanding Officer of 1st Battalion The Royal Irish Regiment paid this tribute to Ranger Cupples:“Justin Cupples was a character. He stood out as such. He was from Cavan in the Republic of Ireland, but I always thought of him as our ‘US Ranger’. He had an eclectic international background having been born in the United States and had grown up in Miami, Florida. He also had some prior service in the US Navy. His parents were based in New York yet maintained a family home in Virginia, Co Cavan, Ireland. In 2006 Ranger Cupples married Vilma, his Lithuanian wife, after meeting her in Ireland.
    He was drawn to the Battalion by the Irish fighting spirit and camaraderie. He joined the Battalion and C Company in Tern Hill, Shropshire in 2007. He was an intelligent, bright soldier. I recall engaging with him on a number of occasions – as I say he stood out – whether on arduous training in Kenya last year or on Pre Deployment Training for Afghanistan. He was never shy to offer an opinion. Ranger Cupples was part of C (Ranger) Company, an element of 1 R IRISH that was detached to support 2 PARA, as Battlegroup North, in Sangin for Op HERRICK 8. He was loyal, strong and determined; a very good soldier. I had last seen him in Sangin several weeks ago, where I recall his professional, relaxed and confident assessment of the situation. For almost 6 months he and his fellow Rangers have fought hard to rid Sangin of the evil scourge of the Taliban and bring security to the town and its troubled people.
    Ranger Cupples was a true Irish Ranger – tough, committed and dedicated to his comrades. His colleagues, mindful of the ultimate sacrifice made by Justin, and with him to the last, continue with his and their mission - with steadfast courage and reinforced purpose.
    Ranger Cupples’ death is a great loss to all of us in 1 R IRISH and to his wife and family. We pray for his soul and for his wife and his family. May his soul rest in peace”.
    Capt Martin, Second in Command C (Ranger) Coy, 1 R IRISH spoke extremely highly of Rgr Cupples:
    “Rgr Cupples was a brave and courageous member of Ranger Coy. He will always be remembered for the diversity that he brought to the Coy. His Irish twang with his American upbringing had been a welcome characteristic since the day and hour he joined C Coy 1 R IRISH. He was an extremely dedicated soldier - always the perfectionist and a shining star of his Platoon. Rgr Cupples was a highly motivated yet polite man, quiet and one could see he spent most of his time absorbing the situation and the information around him. Due to his high level of intellect he was a natural choice to learn the Pashtu language. From the moment he arrived in Afghanistan, he set about using these skills to try and help the people and keep his comrades safe and out of harms way. I am thankful to have had the privilege of commanding Rgr Cupples. He will be sorely missed by everyone who knew him. He has touched many people in his life time; may the way be clear for him”.
    Warrant Officer Class 2 (CSM) Frankie O’Connor is C (Ranger) Company Sergeant Major: “I have come to know Rgr Cupples very well over the past year. From the start I was very impressed with his polite and enthusiastic manner, coming across as very intelligent person and a pleasure to talk to. Rgr Cupples was as strong as a horse and never let his comrades down in any situation. I will miss him greatly and I am proud to have been his Company Sergeant Major”.
    Second Lieutenant Ward, Officer Commanding 7 Platoon: “In the short time that I have known Rgr Cupples, I have been impressed by his welcoming demeanour, his loyalty and his courage in the face of adversity. Furthermore, Rgr Cupples excelled in his role as the Platoon signaller and linguist, enabling the Platoon to be more flexible - allowing his comrades to function most effectively on the ground. He was a very intelligent man and I will sorely miss his thoughtful conversation and dry wit”.
    Sergeant Coult MC was 7 Platoon Sergeant and he paid this tribute: “I first meet Ranger Cupples in Tern Hill. He was one of the more mature members of the Platoon with a history in the US Forces. I quickly took a like to him due to his dry sense of humour. I made him the platoon signaller because he was quick to acquire knowledge and pick up new techniques. I will sadly miss Ranger Cupples being around me and will always remember how much of an asset he was to his Platoon and Company. Ranger Cupples will always be remembered as a soldier who believed change in Afghanistan was possible. May he Rest in Peace”.
    Last edited by rod and serpent; 5 September 2008, 12:41.

  • #2
    May He + Rest In Peace +


    • #3
      farewell brave soldier

      hurry up and wait, are you back yet


      • #4
        Last edited by ARNGScout; 5 September 2008, 15:49.
        There may be only one time in your life when your country will call upon you and you will be the only one who can do the nasty job that has to be done -- do it or forever after there will be the taste of ashes in your mouth.


        • #5
          may he rest in peace


          • #6
            may he rest in peace
            Last edited by Barry; 5 September 2008, 17:00.
            courage, endurance, mateship and sacrifice


            • #7
              MOD: This is a thread in which you can offer your condolances. It's despicable that you would carry on with such petty, narrow minded complaining when people are trying to offer their condolences to a fallen Irish soldier, serving under a different flag. If anyone has a problem with a thread in this forum in particular please contact a mod/admin by PM or the report post function rather than dragging a thread off topic.
              Last edited by johnny no stars; 5 September 2008, 23:44.
              Woo Hoo, finally moderated!!!!! In that select band of people who speak their mind instead of being sheep!


              • #8
                Originally posted by spudula View Post
                I thought this Page was for SERVING AND FORMER MEMBERS OF THE DF AND GARDAI ONLY?
                Where does it say that?

                May he RIP.

                "When you arise in the morning, think of what a precious privilege it is to be alive - to breathe, to think, to enjoy, to love."

                Marcus Aurelius Roman Emperor (161 to 180 A.D.)


                • #9
                  Last edited by johnny no stars; 5 September 2008, 23:45.
                  Woo Hoo, finally moderated!!!!! In that select band of people who speak their mind instead of being sheep!


                  • #10

                    This was an Irishman and a soldier, in this case the rules don't apply,
                    Pay your respects or shut up.
                    Covid 19 is not over's still very real..Hand Hygiene, Social Distancing and Masks.. keep safe


                    • #11


                      • #12
                        Rest In Peace Ranger.............


                        • #13
                          Rest in peace
                          What do you mean abandon ship
                          Are they taking requests?


                          • #14
                            Another Irish soldier laid to rest.

                            "Attack your attic with a seen on the Late Late Show..."


                            • #15
                              Tributes to bravery and determination of Irish soldier

                              Tributes to bravery and determination of Irish soldier

                              CONOR LALLY DAN KEENAN and

                              THE IRISH soldier killed in Afghanistan while serving in the British army has been named as Ranger Justin Cupples (29), from Co Cavan.

                              Mr Cupples was on foot patrol in the Taliban stronghold town of Sangin in northern Helmand province on Thursday morning when an improvised explosive device detonated, rendering him unconscious.

                              He was given emergency medical attention at the scene by his colleagues from the 1st Battalion of the Royal Irish Regiment (RIR). However, his wounds were extensive and he was pronounced dead at 7.30am, about 15 minutes after the explosion.

                              He was just weeks away from completing a six-month tour of duty. His remains were taken by helicopter to Camp Bastion field hospital. An interpreter injured in the explosion survived.

                              Mr Cupples’s death was the 117th fatality suffered by the British army in Afghanistan since operations began there in 2001. Condolences were expressed by Northern Secretary Shaun Woodward.

                              The North’s First Minister Peter Robinson, said of Mr Cupples: “We owe a great debt of gratitude to him and the young people who are fighting to build peace and stability in Afghanistan and protect us from the threat of international terrorism.”

                              Mr Cupples is survived by his wife Vilma. Their home is in Virginia, Co Cavan. The dead man was born in the US to Irish parents who moved back to Ireland some years ago and now divide their time between Co Cavan and New York. They were on holiday when they learned of their son’s death.

                              Mr Cupples served with the US navy and was stationed on USS Theodore Roosevelt during the invasion of Afghanistan in 2001.

                              He settled in Cavan in 2003 after leaving the US navy. He missed military life and decided to enlist in the British army. After completing his training he joined 1st Battalion, RIR, in 2007.

                              In a newspaper interview last October he spoke of his concerns ahead of his deployment to Afghanistan. “I would be lying if I said I wasn’t apprehensive at some level but I’m anxious to go at the same time,” he said.

                              He served in Afghanistan under Lieut Paddy Bury from Wicklow, whose Soldier’s Diary describing the platoon’s work in Helmand province concluded in yesterday’s Irish Times.

                              Lieut Bury, who is now back in England on other duties, expressed his sorrow yesterday at the death of his colleague.

                              “Ranger Cupples was a world-wise and interesting man with as much bravery and determination as he had knowledge. He will be sorely missed.”

                              Lieut Col Ed Freely, commanding officer of 1st Battalion, RIR, said: “Justin Cupples was a character. He stood out as such. He was loyal, strong and determined; a very good soldier.”

                              The area around Sangin town has been one of the most volatile in Afghanistan in recent months. In July, Royal Irish Ranger Martin Delaney (23), of Lusk, Co Dublin, narrowly avoided being killed by a roadside explosive device.

                              Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. Margaret Mead