NEWARK, CA, USA U.S. Marines LCPL, H&S CO, RCT-7, 1ST MAR DIV, TWENTYNINE PALMS, CA AL ANBAR PROVINCE, IRAQ 09/24/2004
A 24-year-old Marine from the San Francisco Bay area who had been scheduled to return home in two weeks for the birth of his child was among four U.S. soldiers killed by enemy fire in Iraq on Sept. 24, according to the U.S. Department of Defense.
Lance Corporal Aaron Boyles, of Alameda, was killed in Iraq’s Anbar province, which includes the restive city of Fallujah, the Pentagon announced Saturday. He was assigned to the 7th Marine Regiment, 1st Marine Division of the Marine Corps Air Ground Combat Center in Twentynine Palms, Calif.
Boyles’ wife, Prabha, 25, said her husband called her Sept. 22 to say that his homecoming would be delayed by one final mission. As she held the telephone to her ripe stomach, he sent kisses to the baby boy he wanted to name Brendon.
“He wanted me to be a full-time mom,” Prabha Boyles told the San Jose Mercury News on Sept. 26 from the couple’s military home in Southern California. “I can’t believe this is happening.”
The young window said she knew what she was getting into as the wife of a Marine. Boyles had already enlisted when they met at a Wal-Mart in Union City where they both worked about two years ago.
They got married in Reno on July 4, 2003. Boyles, who was in boot camp, picked the patriotic date. He was deployed to Iraq on Feb. 6. Prabha said she plans to move in with her family and focus on raising the child who will never know his father.
“He was going to teach him how to play football. He was going to spoil him. I want my son to know his dad was very brave, very strong, very kind. My husband already loved his son so much.”
“When my brother told me he was going to Iraq, I was scared,” said older sister Anna Schneider, barely able to get the words out as she choked back sobs and dabbed at her eyes with a tissue. He was deployed Feb. 6 and told his sister not to cry because “his wife was crying, his mother was crying” and he needed her to be strong.
“I pictured him in a tent reading a book,” Schneider said. “And we all know Aaron doesn’t read.”
The comment drew laughter from the nearly 200 people attending the service at the Chapel of the Chimes in Hayward – one of its few moments of levity.
His other older sister, Angel Boyles, spoke of how her tobacco-chewing brother finally found his calling in the Marines. She said she attended his basic training graduation and had never been more proud of him.
Warfield, the former platoon sergeant, remembered Boyles as “tough and fearless.”
“Boyles had my back,” Warfield said, wearing his military dress uniform and standing near the casket, where a formal portrait of the dead Marine was displayed. “He left our world much too soon.”
Besides his wife, Boyles is survived by a 5-year-old son who lives in Oregon, and his mother, Wanda Kealaiki, of Newark, Calif., and two sisters who live in Sacramento.