The Department of Defense announced today the deaths of 13 service members who were supporting Operation Freedom’s Sentinel. They died Aug. 26, 2021, as the result of an enemy attack while supporting non-combatant evacuation operations in Kabul, Afghanistan. The incident is under investigation.
For the Marine Corps, the deceased are: Marine Corps Staff Sgt. Darin T. Hoover, 31, of Salt Lake City, Utah. Marine Corps Sgt. Johanny Rosariopichardo, 25, of Lawrence, Massachusetts. Marine Corps Sgt. Nicole L. Gee, 23, of Sacramento, California. Marine Corps Cpl. Hunter Lopez, 22, of Indio, California. Marine Corps Cpl. Daegan W. Page, 23, of Omaha, Nebraska. Marine Corps Cpl. Humberto A. Sanchez, 22, of Logansport, Indiana. Marine Corps Lance Cpl. David L. Espinoza, 20, of Rio Bravo, Texas. Marine Corps Lance Cpl. Jared M. Schmitz, 20, of St. Charles, Missouri. Marine Corps Lance Cpl. Rylee J. McCollum, 20, of Jackson, Wyoming. Marine Corps Lance Cpl. Dylan R. Merola, 20, of Rancho Cucamonga, California. Marine Corps Lance Cpl. Kareem M. Nikoui, 20, of Norco, California.
Staff Sergeant Darin T. Hoover, Cpl. Hunter Lopez, Cpl. Daegan W. Page, Cpl. Humberto A. Sanchez, Lance Cpl. Jared M. Schmitz, Lance Cpl. David L. Espinoza, Lance Cpl. Rylee J. McCollum, Lance Cpl. Dylan R. Merola, and Lance Cpl. Kareem M. Nikoui were assigned to 2nd Battalion, 1st Marine Regiment, 1st Marine Division, I Marine Expeditionary Force, Camp Pendleton, California. Sgt. Nicole L. Gee was assigned to Combat Logistics Battalion 24, 24th Marine Expeditionary Unit, II Marine Expeditionary Force, Camp Lejeune, North Carolina. Sgt. Johanny Rosariopichardo was assigned to 5th Marine Expeditionary Brigade, Naval Support Activity Bahrain.
For the Navy, the deceased is: Navy Hospitalman Maxton W. Soviak, 22, of Berlin Heights, Ohio. Hospitalman Maxton W. Soviak was assigned to 1st Marine Regiment, 1st Marine Division, Camp Pendleton, California.
For the Army, the deceased is: Army Staff Sgt. Ryan C. Knauss, 23, of Corryton, Tennessee. Staff Sgt. Ryan C. Knauss was assigned to 9th PSYOP Battalion, 8th PSYOP Group, Ft. Bragg, North Carolina.
Today, these thirteen heroes were returned "Home".
Following is a statement by Secretary of Defense, Lloyd J. Austin III, on today's Dignified Transfer Ceremony, at Dover Air Force Base:
A solemn honor to attend today’s Dignified Transfer Ceremony of the 13 U.S service members who lost their lives outside Hamid Karzai International Airport in Kabul, Afghanistan, on August 26th.
These men and women made the ultimate sacrifice so that others could live. They were and will be forever remembered as heroes.
My heart and my thoughts are with their families, especially today. They, too, have made the ultimate sacrifice.
Thanks for posting their names Jim.