While members of Nolanís family declined to speak to the media, Proulx said Nolanís children are currently in the care of his mother who came from his home province of Newfoundland to look after Nolanís children while their parents were overseas.

Both Nolan and his common-law partner Kelly were serving six-month stints in Afghanistan, but were not posted to the same part of the country.

"Rick and Kelly were very close," Proulx said, choking back tears. "You didnít just know they were partners, you could feel it."

Proulx said the couple were both dedicated to the military and saw their work in Afghanistan as necessary for the entire country.

"They both knew they had to do their job, and they both had a strong commitment to Canadian people," she said.

Proulx described Nolan and his partner as ideal neighbours who were renowned for lending a helping hand without being asked.

Proulx recalled an incident just two weeks before Nolanís departure where he removed a fallen tree from her yard while she was at work, adding that such acts of kindness were common.

"You couldnít ask for better neighbours," Proulx said. "They were extraordinary people."