Army veteran son of former England captain Terry Butcher dies after struggling to cope in wake of Afghanistan tour

Hayley Dixon
Christopher Butcher was described as a

Former England Captain Terry Butcher is "distraught" after the death of his Army veteran son who had struggled to cope after a tour of duty in Afghanistan. 

Christopher Butcher, 35, was described as a "hero" by his brother Ed, who announced his death on his Facebook page in an emotional tribute. 

The 31-year-old posted: "It is with the upmost sadness that I regret to say that my brother Christopher Butcher has passed away this morning. 

"My older brother was the best brother I can ever of asked for and his death has hit the entire family hard. 

"The family are together and we will release the dates of the funeral in due time. I wanted to put this on Facebook to inform all who knew him. 

"We know how greatly he was loved and we’re sorry that we can’t call every person who knew him to tell them."

Terry Butcher, the former England captain, is said to be 'distraught' after the death of his eldest son Credit: Graham Stuart 

He later posted: "Chris you were my hero, you were my best friend and you were someone I would throw myself in the way of a truck for!  

"This is for you and thank you for everything you ever taught me and I will miss you for the rest of my life but you will never be forgotten!"

The messages were met with a raft of condolences, with friends describing Mr Butcher as a "hero". 

Jovilisi Kawea wrote: "I served with your brother in Iraq... he was my commander and a top bloke... sorely will be missed. RIP boss". 

Chass CB Lateo added: "This is so very very sad indeed - Herrick 10 sits high in a lot of our memories, but I always remember the cheeky, chirpy and cheerful Chris {a most courageous hero that I had the pleasure of serving alongside). 

"The life and soul of any party (and there were a few in `40`). A lovely man; RIP my friend...see you at the Final Gun Position. My sincere condolences to all the family; such sadness."

Mr Butcher's brother announced his death on Facebook 

Harry Wright added: "I'm an ex-gunner (Artillery not Arsenal). I didn't know Chris, but I met your Dad a few times in Roadshow Music, Stirling with Ted Christopher. Sadly, few people realise what Chris went through, and no matter how strong you are, it does affect you. Please pass on my sincere condolences to your Dad and all the family. I hope you find peace."

Mr Butcher had served in Afghanistan and described himself on his Facebook page as a "now just a moody bitter vet". 

His father, who won 77 caps in a ten-year international career, has spoken of his pride for his son but also how he had struggled to cope. 

Before being overcome by emotion, Mr Butcher Snr said in a 2014 interview:  "Unfortunately Chris is not in a good way right now.

"When he told me about going into that compound in Afghanistan, feeling the bullets pinging off his helmet, well..."

A source close to the family last night told the Sun: "Terry is understandably distraught, as are the whole family.

"It has really rocked them."

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