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Fallen sailor returns to Canada

The body of a Nova Scotia-based sailor killed in Afghanistan has arrived back in Canada.

The body of a Nova Scotia-based sailor killed in Afghanistan has arrived back in Canada.

A military plane carrying the body of Petty Officer (second class) Craig Blake, of CFB Shearwater, touched down at CFB Trenton, in eastern Ontario, on Thursday afternoon.

His body then took the familiar route along the Highway of Heroes to the coroner’s office in Toronto.

Nearly 30 of his Halifax brethren were in Trenton to be there to receive the remains. Eight of them were pallbearers and 20 acted as a colour guard.

Blake was killed Monday when a roadside bomb exploded west of Kandahar City.

The 37-year-old had been in Afghanistan for only a couple of weeks.

Blake, who was a minor hockey coach, was the first sailor and 143rd member of the Canadian Forces to die since the Afghan mission started in 2002.

On Wednesday, more than 1,500 Canadian and ISAF personnel attended a ramp ceremony at Kandahar Airfield for Blake.

Details on the funeral service have not been released, but no matter where the funeral for the Simcoe, Ont., native takes place, another memorial service will be held within the diving unit.

Blake was a husband and father of two. His brother Chris said Tuesday that Blake was a sailor first and foremost and was apprehensive about serving in Afghanistan.

“Being in the ordnance and bomb disposal and everything he was trained for, he also knew that this was part of his calling.”

 
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