Tributes poured in overnight for Rupert Tabone, the 54-year-old man who died on Sunday when he lost control of his motorbike in Birkirkara.
The General Workers Union shared a photo of Tabone on Facebook, thanking him for his service to the country as an ex-bombardier with the Armed Forces of Malta, while offering condolences to his relatives.
Home Affairs Minister Byron Camilleri expressed his sympathy under the GWU's post.
Former AFM colleague Ivan M Consiglio, meanwhile, expressed shock: "Feeling gutted. Rupert Tabone, our ex-serviceman brother who served at AFM's Maritime Squadron, tragically lost his life today during a traffic accident while riding his motorbike.
"Great, pleasant, jovial and hardworking character, awesome NCO [noncommissioned officer] who loved his engines. Am shocked to the bone, bro! Gone too, too soon," he wrote on Facebook.
Fellow bike enthusiasts commented that the man was "taken too soon".
Emma Vella recalled Tabone's jovial character: "Rip Rupert, so so sad to hear this news. You lit up the room whenever you were around. Funny and energetic. A true gem in Bugibba back in the days... we will all miss you truly".
The police said on Sunday the 54-year-old man who lives in St Paul's Bay, was riding a Zontes ZT-310 in the direction of Lija, when he lost control of the bike and overturned in Triq Dun Karm.
He died on the spot.
The accident happened a week after two other motorcycle riders were killed in an accident.