a BRAVE Sheffield soldier is putting his life on the line for his country again - on his third tour of duty in a war zone.
Staff Sergeant Dean Burditt - who celebrates his 31st birthday today - has been posted to Afghanistan for the next six months.
It is his second visit to the country in six years and before that he served in Iraq during the Gulf War and was involved on day one of the conflict.
The father-of-two, from Beighton, Sheffield, who serves with the Royal Logistics Corps and is based in Deepcut, Surrey, joined the Army at 16 shortly after leaving Westfield School and has risen up the ranks from being a corporal on the front line to a staff sergeant in charge of more than 30 men.
He has also instructed at Sandhurst Royal Military Academy, where one of his pupils was a member of the Royal family in Qatar, who invited him for a holiday at his palace.
Staff Sergeant Burditt has also travelled to Australia, Germany and Barbados during his Army career.
Dean’s proud mum Jayne said she is nervous about his latest tour of duty and is counting down the days until he arrives back on British soil.
“When he was sent to Iraq in 2003 it was his 21st birthday and today, his 31st birthday, he is in Afghanistan,” she said.
“I am really proud of Dean for what he has achieved with the Army but naturally am really worried that he has been sent to Afghanistan again and will not be able to rest until he steps back on English soil alive.
“I just hope and pray that him and his men come back home safe.”
Jayne said she never tried to stop Dean from pursuing his Army career, but it is tough being a relative of a soldier at war.
“I have never tried to stop him and am proud of what he is doing for his country but at the same time I am petrified,” she added.
“I do feel that they are doing a good job and it is really sad whenever any one loses a life over there - they are absolute heroes for putting themselves at risk for our safety.”