Jonathan D Porto

PINELLAS, FL, USA

U.S. Marines

CPL, 1ST BN 6TH MAR, (RCT-7, MEB-A FWD) 2D MAR DIV, CAMP LEJEUNE, NC

HELMAND PROVINCE, AFGHANISTAN 03/14/2010


They stood along the route, saluting and waving American flags as Marine Cpl. Jonathan D. Porto was transported to a St. Petersburg funeral home.

Porto fell in love with the Marines when he was 24. He actually enjoyed basic training at Parris Island, South Carolina. “I love it (this place),” he wrote to his mother, Rachel Bernaby.

But the real love of Porto’s life was Rachel Jewell whom he met in the summer of 2008. Porto proposed shortly after they met. He didn’t have a ring, but Porto got down on one knee and took the smaller chain from his dog tag and wrapped it around her finger. The actual engagement ring was offered to Rachel on Thanksgiving and they were wed on May 2, 2009

Jonathan and Rachel were blessed with the birth of their child Ariana Ralyn on January 15, 2010. Porto cheered his wife through delivery via phone from Afghanistan. Porto never got to meet his daughter.

“I pray,” she said, “that Ariana, continues to look like him.” She resembles Porto already.

Before deploying to Afghanistan, the couple recorded Porto reading from a few children’s books. Ariana lights up and coos when she hears her dad recite If You Give a Cat a Cupcake. Rachel will be certain that Ariana knows her father “I will make it a point that she will know how amazing he is.”

Jonathan’s portrait is also on Poster 8