Family of Edinburgh soldier killed while fighting in Ukraine speak of their ‘devastating’ loss

The family of an Edinburgh-based soldier shot and killed while fighting in Ukraine have spoken of their “devastating” loss.

Jordan Gatley, from Edinburgh, died in the the city of Severodonetsk which has witnessed intense combat in recent days.

Jordan left the British army in March before travelling to Ukraine in the wake of the Russian invasion.

His father Dean described his fallen son as a “hero”, adding that Jordan was “loved” by both his comrades and everyone who knew him.

Dean posted on Facebook: “I didn’t think that I’d ever use social media in this way but Sally, Adam and I would like to share some family news with all our friends, but there are just too many people to contact.

“Yesterday, Friday June 10, we received the devastating news that our son, Jordan, has been shot and killed in the city of Severodonetsk, Ukraine.

“Jordan left the British Army in March this year to continue his career as a soldier in other areas.

“The war against Europe had begun so, after careful consideration, he went to the Ukraine to help.

“We have had several messages from his team out there telling us of his wealth of knowledge, his skills as a soldier and his love of his job.

“His team say they all loved him, as did we, and he made a massive difference to many peoples lives, not only soldiering, but also by training the Ukrainian forces.

“Jordan and his team were so proud of the work they were doing and he often told me that the missions they were going on were dangerous, but necessary.

“He loved his job and we are so proud of him. He truly was a hero and will forever be in our hearts.”

Severodonetsk has borne heavy fighting as the Russia invaders attempt to capture regions and cities in east Ukraine.

The BBC says it understands Jordan served in the British armed forces as a rifleman with the Edinburgh-based third battalion of The Rifles and was discharged in March before travelling to Ukraine.

Smoke and dirt rise from shelling in the city of Severodonetsk during fight between Ukrainian and Russian troops in the eastern Ukrainian region of Donbas on June 7, 2022. (Photo by ARIS MESSINIS / AFP) (Photo by ARIS MESSINIS/AFP via Getty Images)

The Foreign Office has said it is “supporting the family of a British man who has died in Ukraine”, the BBC added.

Scenes of fighting have been commonplace in Severodonetsk for the last few months with Russia using heavy artillery to nullify Ukrainian forces in the region.

Russia is attempting to capture the Luhansk and Donetsk regions in the east of the country in order to control the industrial apparatus that exists in the Donbas.

The UK’s foreign office has recommended advice that states that individuals considering travelling to Ukraine should refrain from doing so.

The Ministry of Defence also warned that those travelling to region to fight Russia may also be committing a criminal offence and could face prosecution.

In March, the head of the British armed forces told the BBC that UK nationals should not go to Ukraine to fight and should find other means to assist.

Adm Sir Tony Radakin said the “sound of gunfire” was not “something you want to rush to”.

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