In LovinG MemorY
U.S. Marines Devastated after Crash
JACKSONVILLE, N.C. - Ten U.S. service members died when a pair of Marine Corps helicopters from a unit based in North Carolina crashed off the coast of Africa, U.S. military officials confirmed Sunday.
The two CH-53E choppers, carrying a dozen crew and troops from a U.S. counterterrorism force, went down during a training flight.
The Pentagon said the Marines killed in the crash were:
• 1st Lt. Brandon R. Dronet, 33, of Erath, La.
• Sgt. James F. Fordyce, 22, of Newtown Square, Pa.
• Lance Cpl. Samuel W. Large, Jr., 21, of Villa Rica, Ga.
• Sgt. Donnie Leo F. Levens, 25, of Long Beach, Miss.
• Cpl. Matthieu Marcellus, 31, of Gainesville, Fla.
• Sgt. Jonathan E. McColley, 23, of Gettysburg, Pa.
• Lance Cpl. Nicholas J. Sovie, 20, of Ogdensburg, N.Y.
• Capt. Bryan D. Willard, 33, of Hummelstown, Pa.
Also killed in the crash were Senior Airman Alecia S. Good, 23, of Broadview Heights, Ohio, of the 92nd Communications Squadron at Fairchild Air Force Base, Wash.; and Staff Sgt. Luis M. Melendez Sanchez, 33, of Bayamon, Puerto Rico, of the 1st Communications Squadron, Langley Air Force Base, Va.
Margaret Levens, of Long Beach, Miss., said she was proud that her son, Donnie Levens, had a chance to do what he loved.
"He was there to serve his country and to keep his family and country safe," Margaret Levens said. "It was what he wanted to do. He was there for us ... in fact he had reenlisted for four (more) years."
We have all spoken of the merciless carnage and the fury that the winds of terrorism have blown.
Wev'e gaped at photographs, especially as of late,of mountains of rubble that used to be embassies and homes.
And now a father, mother, sister or brother, returns home no more.
But when faith is firm, and conscience clear, a mother can hear the sounds of sorrow ,yet still hold her son in her loving memory..knowing "He was there to serve his country and to keep his family and country safe,"
And that he did.