Private Robert Costall of the 1st Battalion, Princess Patricia's Canadian Light Infantry (image: Combat Camera)
Army National Guardsman Sgt. 1st Class John Thomas Stone, 53, of Tunbridge, VT (AP PHOTO)
U.S. medic died next to Canadian soldier(Emphasis mine)
Pte. Rob Costall, meanwhile, was a scrappy hockey player, but still wrote poetry in Grade 9. He surprised many when he decided to enlist.
The Canadian military gave him a sense of direction, relatives say, providing him with a lifestyle he quickly embraced.
The 21-year-old Canadian with the year-old child and high-school sweetheart at home had been in Afghanistan for 52 days.
Stone, the 52-year-old American medic who found love much later in life — and who looked after children far from home, though he himself had none — had spent his life in and out of the military, and began his third tour of duty in Afghanistan last July with the Vermont National Guard.
But they did have something in common. Both believed they could make a difference in Afghanistan.
And they died, an American and a Canadian together, in a firefight last week in Helmand province, 110 kilometres from Kandahar city.
It's believed to be the first time such allies have died fighting side by side in more than half a century.