LiveNews - The Australian soldier killed by Taliban fighters in Afghanistan has been described as an experienced commander and a hero. Sergeant Matthew Locke was in Oruzgan province on his second tour of duty in Afghanistan when militants opened fire – shooting him in the chest. Sergeant Locke had been in the firing line before last year he was awarded a gallantry medal for outstanding leadership under fire in Afghanistan. The Army Chief Lieutenant General Peter Leahy says he was a true Australian hero. “The Army has lost a gallant and respected soldier,” he said. The news stunned and saddened political leaders, with both the Prime Minister and Opposition Leader paying tribute to the soldier.