Young British soldier, Sapper Connor Morrison, aged 20, tragically passed away from natural causes at Ipswich Hospital on 23 July 2022. Sapper Morrison, a member of the 23 Parachute Engineer Regiment stationed in Woodbridge, Suffolk, had experienced breathing difficulties two days prior, prompting the attendance of paramedics at the barracks. The incident occurred during a period of record-breaking heat in the UK, with temperatures reaching a scorching 40.3°C (105°F) in Coningsby, Lincolnshire.
While an investigation by the Defence Safety Authority remains ongoing, the Ministry of Defence (MOD) confirmed that Sapper Morrison’s death was classified as a “non-operational incident”. The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) has concluded their investigation based on the post-mortem results, concluding it was a natural death and closing the case.
Paying tribute to the young soldier, Sapper Morrison’s commanding officer, Lt Col Jack Crossley, described him as a “professional soldier with much promise”. He was well-respected by his comrades and had a penchant for good-natured banter about Scottish football, much to the amusement of his English colleagues. Lt Col Crossley further added, “Keen and enthusiastic, he worked hard to achieve his goals at every stage of his training and impressed his instructors with his knowledge and skills. More importantly, he was a loyal friend and a genuine team player.”
Both the HSE and Suffolk Police have confirmed that their investigations have concluded. The MOD continues to offer their condolences to Sapper Morrison’s family, highlighting that ongoing inquiries are being conducted.
This tragic event serves as a stark reminder of the potential dangers of extreme heat, especially for those undertaking physically demanding activities. While the exact cause of Sapper Morrison’s death remains under investigation, his memory will be cherished by his loved ones and colleagues.