The body of the first Canadian soldier to be killed in Afghanistan this year is on its way home after a sombre ramp ceremony Thursday at Kandahar Airfield.

More than 2,000 soldiers attended the ceremony, including the three soldiers who were injured by the bomb blast that killed 42-year-old Trooper Brian Richard Good.

"They were visibly emotional as the casket was being carried into the Hercules plane," CTV's Steve Chao reported Thursday from Kandahar.

Chao said there was a "collective sadness" among the soldiers throughout the day.

Good, 42, from the Royal Canadian Dragoons from CFB Petawawa, Ont., was serving with the 3rd Battalion of the Royal Canadian Regiment battle group.

He was killed by an improvised explosive device, which detonated Wednesday morning near his armoured vehicle in Afghanistan's Shah Wali Kowt district, about 35 kilometres north of Kandahar City.

The three injured soldiers are members of the same battle group.

In his statement Wednesday, Col. Jamie Cade, acting commander of Task Force Kandahar, described Good as "an easygoing individual who would do anything for anyone."

"He was active in his community and the best neighbour you could ask for. He had a distinctive laugh, a smile that reached from ear to ear."

Cade said Good was devoted to his wife, Sandra, and two daughters, of whom he spoke often.

Canadian military chaplain Capt. Dave Donevan said Good had a willingness to serve others, accepted people as they were and never broke a promise.

"These are qualities that transform just another soldier into a buddy who's got your back."

Good came to the military late in life out of a desire to serve his country and to help make Afghanistan a better place, fellow soldiers said.

Maj. Brian Healey said Good acted as a mentor and father figure to some of the younger soldiers in the battle group.

"He's actually an individual who the younger soldiers can look to. If they have some issues, they can talk to him," Healey said.

"Sometimes, your buddies aren't always going to give you the truth, but someone at his age, they took him good at his word."

The fatality brings Canada's troop death toll in Afghanistan to 107 since the mission began in 2002.

Traditionally, the Taliban slow their insurgent activities during the winter, but over the last month alone, 10 Canadian soldiers have been killed, all by improvised explosive devices, or IEDs.

Though the Taliban have claimed they're waging an emboldened insurgency against Canadian soldiers, NATO military officials blame the recent rash of deaths on a run bad luck.

Despite the rise in attacks against Canadian troops, soldiers are finding more IEDs than they strike, the military said.

And in the coming months, soldiers will try and avoid the dangerous, IED-littered roads by flying in helicopters.

With files from The Canadian Press