Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Memorial held for local marine killed in Iraq

It was a beautiful ceremony... extremely moving.

ANZA -- At times light-hearted and at others solemn, a memorial service Monday for Jeromy D. West, a 20-year-old Marine from Aguanga killed recently in Iraq, was in the end a celebration of the life of a young man who had loved his family and was proud to serve his country.

[...] They called him a hero and recalled how on many occasions he had been protective of them or he made them laugh.

Lisa West, his mother, spoke about her son's stubbornness, about the day he was born, about the mullet haircut he sported in his youth and about his decision to join the Marines when he was 17.

Many things went through her mind the day he enlisted, she said, "and this day was one of them." But she is at peace, West said, because it had been something her son felt passionate about doing.

"He wanted to do this so his friends and family were safe," she said.

I was lucky enough to meet Jeromy once, even if it was only in passing, and I was truly saddened when I heard he'd been killed by a sniper in Iraq. I knew how hard this would be for his family because of how proud his mother and sister were of him and his service. He will be remembered and honored for years in this area.

Thank you for your service Jeromy. Rest in peace.

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