ST LOUIS, MO, USA
CPL, 3D BN 1ST MAR, (RCT-7, I MEF FWD), 1ST MAR DIV, CAMP PENDLETON, CA
HELMAND PROVINCE, AFGHANISTAN 06/06/2010
The Department of Defense confirmed a Marine from St. Louis was among three killed in Afghanistan’s Helmand Province.
Corporal Donald Marler, 22, was assigned to the 3rd Battalion, 1st Marine Regiment, 1st Marine Division in Camp Pendleton, California. Marler and Sergeant Brandon C. Bury and Lance Corporal Derek Hernandez were killed in a vehicle accident while conducting combat operations against enemy forces on Sunday.
Marler was on his first combat deployment.
Donald was born on August 12th, 1987 in St. Louis, MO to David Marler Sr. and Susan (nee Florian) Marler. He attended Oakville Senior High School, where he graduated in 2006. At Oakville Don played basketball and was active in school athletics. Donald chose to miss high school graduation to enter early into the Marine Corp. He was an avid Marine and served in the Presidential Security detail at Camp David, where he guarded President George W. Bush and President Barack Obama.
David requested specifically to enter Marine Corp Unit 3/1, so he could serve his country in Afghanistan.
His personal service awards include: the Navy Unit Commendation, Navy Meritorious Unit Commendation, Marine Corps Good Conduct Medal, National Defense Service Medal, Afghanistan Campaign Medal and the Global War on Terrorism Service Medal.
Donald was an enthusiastic athlete and a faithful son, grandson, brother, uncle, cousin and friend. Most importantly Donald was a passionate Marine who placed service to his country far higher that anything else.
Donald is survived by his mother Susan Florian Marler, his father David Marler Sr., his sister Jennifer Marler Pupillo (Mike), his brothers David Marler Jr. and LCorporal Jacob Marler, his niece Mia Pupillo and his grandparents Vallie and Donald Marler and Edward Florian (USN Ret.). Donald is also survived by his girlfriend Joelle Kearns, who he loved dearly, and many cousins, aunts, uncles and friends.
Flags flew at half-staff on Tuesday in memory of Corporal Marler.