Nothing will dim the pain this morning still being felt by Sally Thorneloe or her daughters Hannah and Sophie, but we hope yesterday’s marks of respect in Oxford and Wiltshire will offer a degree of comfort in the future.

More than 100 people were outside the John Radcliffe in silent tribute as the bodies of Lieutenant Colonel Rupert Thorneloe and Trooper Joshua Hammond were repatriated.

Whatever the politics over Britain’s military engagements, both of these men died for their country and they deserve our respect for making the supreme sacrifice.

Most of the people paying silent tribute did not know Lt Col Thorneloe, yet felt compelled to be there on a Monday afternoon as a mark of respect to both men.

Many kind words have been said about this heroic soldier from Kirtlington and all were genuinely heartfelt and utterly deserved.

The Thorneloes can take some measure of comfort at this public display of support from ex-service personnel and others, which spoke as loudly as all the verbal and written tributes.

These were real people making a real tribute to tell this grieving family that they do recognise their pain and hope in some way to have helped — if not today, then, hopefully, in days to come.