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The Final Duty Station This forum is presented by Retired GySgt Bill Conroy. It is a listing of those that have received orders for their final duty station. These Marines have given their all. We now give our honor.

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Old 01-27-2005, 07:47 AM
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GyBill GyBill is offline
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Cpl. Sean Kelly USMC (Iraq)

Pitman Marine killed in Iraq
Thursday, January 27, 2005
By The Associated Press
gcnews@sjnewsco,com
PITMAN -- A borough Marine was among the 31 service members killed when a transport helicopter crashed in Iraq Wednesday, his family said.

Cpl. Sean Kelly, 23, was serving with Charlie Company, 1st Battalion, 3rd Marines, his parents said.


He was due to leave Iraq Feb. 7 and go to Kuwait, Alexander and Lynn Kelly told WPVI-TV. They said they last spoke to their son on Monday.

Sean Kelly, a 2000 graduate of Pitman High School, had been a Marine for four years. His family has a strong military tradition; both his father and grandfather were veterans.

Alexander Kelly said his son planned to re-enlist and make the service his career.

"Since high school, he wanted to be a Marine, and he did what he wanted to do. He just always wanted to be a Marine," Alexander Kelly said.

The CH-53E Super Stallion was carrying personnel from the 1st Marine Division on a security mission in support of the election when it went down about 1:20 a.m. near the town of Rutbah, about 220 miles west of Baghdad, the military said.

The crash occurred during severe weather, but its cause was still under investigation, said Army Gen. John Abizaid, chief of U.S. Central Command. An Accuweather map showed sandstorms Wednesday in the western region of Iraq where the crash took place.

A search and rescue team was at the site. The victims were 30 Marines and one sailor, said Lt. Gen. John Sattler, the top Marine commander in Iraq -- the most American service members to die in a single incident since the March 2003 invasion of Iraq.

All but three of the Marines had been based in Hawaii, according to Sen. Daniel Akaka, D-Hawaii.

The deadliest previous incident for U.S. troops was also a helicopter crash: a November 2003 collision of two Black Hawk helicopters that killed 17. Before Wednesday's bloodshed, the most Americans killed in one day came on the invasion's third day -- March 23, 2003 -- when 28 troops were killed during the U.S. military's drive to take Baghdad and topple Saddam Hussein.

The U.S. military has not seen such a high loss of life in one day in 15 years -- since an explosion ripped through a gun turret on the USS Iowa during a training exercise in the Caribbean in April 1989, killing 47 sailors.
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