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Hundreds attend Warrington solider's funeral

Private Daniel Wade, who was killed by a Taliban Bomb in Afghanistan Photo: MOD

Hundred of mourners have attended the funeral of Private Daniel Wade in Warrington.

Pte Wade, 20, was killed alongside five colleagues when a huge roadside bomb exploded in Afghanistan on March 6. He was a member of 3rd Battalion, the Yorkshire Regiment.

The force of the Taliban attack - which was the deadliest single attack on British forces in Afghanistan since 2001 - turned the Warrior upside down and blew off its gun turret.

Soldiers bowed their heads and applause was heard as Private Wade's coffin arrived at the church in Warrington Credit: ITV Granada

Sergeant Nigel Coupe, 33, of 1st Battalion The Duke of Lancaster's Regiment, who lived in St Annes, Lancashire, was also killed in the blast.

Pte Wade's funeral was held at St Elphins Church, Warrington.

A letter from his unborn daughter was left attached to a bunch of flowers.

A card from Private Wade's unborn daughter was among the tributes Credit: ITV Granada

It began: "To Daddy, my hero, I'm so proud of you."

Hundreds of people lined the streets of Pte Wade's hometown and applause rang out in tribute as the funeral cars slowly made their way to St Elphin's Church.

The soldier's coffin, draped in the Union flag, was carried into the church by colleagues from his unit as a Guard of Honour was staged by members of the local Royal British Legion.

The mourners were led by Pte Wade's sobbing mother, Lisa, who was wearing her son's blue army-issue jacket and carrying his photograph in a frame.

She was accompanied by his sister Stacey and other relatives.

The soldier's fiancee, Emma Hickman, who is pregnant with their daughter Lexie, followed close behind.

After his death, his family said in a statement: "Daniel was a loving son, fiance, brother, nephew, grandson, cousin and friend to many.

"He would have made a fantastic father to his baby girl Lexie who is due on June 12.

"We are all devastated to have lost such a wonderful caring, brave man."

"He was a bright star of the future that had a fantastic career ahead of him.

"He was an individual that epitomised everything right about the modern infantryman of today, that thoroughly loved his job, who will be sadly missed by all that knew him.

"He was a superb guy. He gave a hundred per cent to everything he undertook in the army."

– Major Malcolm Birkett, 3rd Battalion Yorkshire Regiment

As the soldier's funeral began, Wherever You Will Go by Charlene Soraia was played.

Reading tributes from family and friends, Padre George Perera, acting chaplain of the Royal Welsh Fusiliers, said the soldier's passions were cars, motocross bikes and Manchester United.

Pte Wade had to go through rigorous medical tests before he was allowed to join the Army, after having major surgery to tackle a hole in his heart at the age of five, Rev Perera said.

The chaplain told the service Pte Wade had his fiancee's name etched on his rifle and carried Lexie's baby scan inside his body armour.

He told how Pte Wade's mother said: "Dan was excited about becoming a father. He was so pleased.

"It was a special time. Dan loved Emma dearly and was over the moon she was going to be the mother of his daughter, Lexie.

"Just looking at her beautiful mother and father, I know how beautiful she will be."

As the service concluded and the coffin was carried out of the church, the mourners clapped and Insomnia by Faithless was played.

Pte Wade joined the Army aged 18 in January 2011 and his battalion in July that year.