KANDAHAR, Afghanistan - The body of Sapper Steven Marshall has begun its journey home after a ramp ceremony at Kandahar Airfield in Afghanistan.

Marshall, 24, was killed Friday afternoon when his patrol struck an IED in Panjwaii district, 20 kilometres southwest of Kandahar city.

More than 2,300 Canadian and foreign troops gathered on the airfield's tarmac to pay their last respects to Marshall before his flag-draped coffin boarded a military plane for Canada.

One of his friends, Dustin Perry remembered Sapper as someone with a great sense of humour.

Perry says Marshall always put others before himself.

Marshall is the 133rd Canadian soldier to die as part of the Afghan mission, and the second this week following the death of Lt. Justin Boyes in an IED blast Wednesday.

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