Kenneth Byron (1956-2021): veteran sergeant who documented the RBR in pictures
A veteran soldier and photographer whose images record the history of the Royal Bermuda Regiment has died.
Sergeant Kenneth Byron was 64.
Lieutenant-Colonel Ben Beasley, the RBR’s Commanding Officer, said that even though Sgt Byron spent much of his military career as a part-time soldier, he became “a permanent fixture at Camp for decades, taking on an almost transcendent persona among the ranks”.
He added: “A universally liked soldier, he was witty and positive even in the most challenging of circumstances.
“I was fortunate to have worked with him in the public relations section for four years and enjoyed his good humour, selfless commitment, and most especially his loyalty.
“He gave of himself without hesitation, and was thoroughly dependable.”
Colonel Beasley said Sgt Byron’s career began as a conscript in 1975.
His first years at the Regiment were spent in infantry companies before he was transferred to the Regimental Police.
Colonel Beasley said: “Due to his outwardly amiable nature present in later service, most of the current serving soldiers wouldn’t be able to picture the former Corporal Byron as an RP who would have been responsible for arresting and detaining rule breakers and absentees – though by all accounts he was punctilious and uncompromising.”
Sergeant Byron was promoted to Lance Corporal in 1978 and Corporal in 1995 and served until 1992.
He re-enlisted in 2000, and was promoted to Sergeant in 2001.
Colonel Beasley said Sergeant Byron moved to the Motor Transport Section where he remained for ten years, including five years on the full-time staff as a diplomatic driver for the Governor.
He added: “His final posting was to the public relations section where he was able to combine work with his beloved hobby of photography.
“He did a sterling job adding to the pictorial history of the Regiment.
“Countless family members have been able to look at pictures of the Regiment on training and operations and seen a loved one in uniform thanks to Sergeant Byron’s service.”
Colonel Beasley said: “Following active service, Sergeant Byron continued to give to the Regiment by taking an active role in the RBR Association – where we were all able to continue to enjoy the company of a wonderful friend.“
Colonel Beasley offered the RBR’s condolences to Sgt Byron’s widow, DeLisa, son Tyrone and daughter Connie.
Sgt Byron was awarded the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Medal in 2012 and the Efficiency Medal 2013 with clasp in 2019.
Sgt Byron, who worked at the Department of Public Transportation in civilian life, was nicknamed “Camera Man” because of his passion for photography.
Regimental Sergeant Major Jason Harrell, the top non-commissioned officer in the RBR, said: “Sergeant Byron took whatever role he was filling, be it Regimental Police, Motor Transport or public relations, seriously.
“He always proved to be reliable, professional and put his best foot forward.
“He always took a keen interest in the welfare and morale of all young soldiers, not just those that worked directly for him.
“Sergeant Byron was also famous for always having a joke to tell.”
⋅ Kenneth Leroy McDonal Byron, a Sergeant in the Royal Bermuda Regiment and gifted photographer, was born on October 23, 1956. He died in May 2021. He was 64.