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Tuesday, April 11, 2006

Five Americans who died in Iraq

They all died Americans
Marine killed in Iraq was orphan immigrant who enlisted to thank U.S. for his new life

By Laura Wides

4:10 a.m., March 25, 2003

LOMITA – Jose Gutierrez left war-torn Guatemala for a new life in the United States – and become one of his adopted country's first two casualties in Iraq.

An orphan who grew up on the streets while Guatemala was enmeshed in civil war, he found a new family when at age 14 he traveled to the United States by train, foot and bus. He enlisted partly to thank the United States for his new life, his foster brother said.

"He joined the Marines to pay back a little of what he'd gotten from the U.S.," Max Mosquera said. "For him it was a question of honor."

Lance Cpl. Gutierrez, 22, was killed in ground combat Friday. On Monday, a flag hung outside the Mosqueras' home in Lomita, 25 miles south of Los Angeles. The front porch was lined with pots of geraniums, each with a flag and a sign that read "United We Stand."

His foster mother, Nora Mosquera, 56, displayed Gutierrez's school and Marine certificates as she wavered between tears and happy memories. Gutierrez never forgot the sister he left behind in Guatemala and always hoped to bring her to the United States, she said.

Soldier Defended Adopted Home
Nigerian Immigrant Killed in Iraq Witnessed 9/11 Attacks

By Brigid Schulte
Washington Post Staff Writer
Saturday, January 29, 2005; Page B02

Francis Obaji was born in Nigeria and raised in New York. And when he watched the World Trade Center towers collapse Sept. 11, 2001, as he waited for the Staten Island Ferry, he decided he had to become a soldier.

He died in Iraq.

And on a bright and bitter January day, as family and friends clutched each other and wept, Pfc. Francis Obaji was buried at Arlington National Cemetery.

Obaji, 21, had wanted to be a doctor. He was supposed to have been home by the end of March.

Immigrant Serving in Iraq Falls Before Realizing Ultimate Goal

News Feature, Grace E. Jang,
KoreAm Journal, Aug 28, 2005
He was the guy with the “big, beautiful, gracious smile.” His calm, mature demeanor put those around him at ease. Just being around him made you feel safe, say those who knew Min Soo Choi.

Mostly, people remember that Min Soo loved his sister. He took his role as big brother seriously. Before leaving for Iraq with the U.S. Army in January, Min Soo visited his old high school, where Mirry was in her senior year, and asked his guidance counselor for a favor. Take care of my baby sister, he said.

The bond between Min Soo and Mirry was “immeasurable,” said Vincent Paolini, the counselor at Pascack Valley High School in Hillsdale, N.J.

A month after Min Soo was deployed, he and another soldier — both with the 8th Cavalry of the 3rd Infantry’s 6th Squadron — were killed Feb. 26 while on patrol in Abertha, 20 miles from Baghdad, according to a statement by the U.S. Department of Defense.

He was 21.

Min Soo went overseas in pursuit of a dream — a job as a Federal Bureau of Investigations agent. The 2003 Pascack Valley High graduate had barely finished his first semester at John Jay College in New York, where he was studying criminology, when he decided to enlist.

The U.S. Army, Choi believed, would be a one-way ticket to obtaining American citizenship, a prerequisite for any law enforcement position. But by the time he was deployed, joining the military was more than just a means to an end.

Tibetan-American Marine Killed in Iraq

Cpl. Tenzin Choeku Dengkhim, a 19-year-old immigrant has become the first Tibetan-American killed in combat in Iraq. Photo: RFA

WASHINGTON—A 19-year-old Tibetan from Virginia has been killed in combat in Iraq, less than one month after deploying there.

Cpl. Tenzin Choeku Dengkhim died as a result of “hostile action” April 2, the Pentagon said. He appears to be the first Tibetan-American killed in combat in Iraq.

“He was a very good boy, deeply religious, and [he] talked of serving Tibet as a soldier after he completed his military career as U.S. Marine,” his mother, Radio Free Asia (RFA) Tibetan service broadcaster Rinzin Choedon, said.


Washington, D.C. --- A Filipino-American woman from Hawaii serving in the United States military in Iraq was killed in a Christmas Eve attack.

The US Defense department’s website reported that a rocket-propelled grenade attack last December 24 near Hawijah in northern Iraq killed Army Sergeant Myla L. Maravillosa, 24, of Wahiawa, Hawaii.

Her death drew expressions of sympathy from the Philippine government, addressed both to her Hawaii-based family and hometown relatives in Bohol province in Central Visayas.

posted by Steve @ 12:03:00 PM

12:03:00 PM

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