Mario D. Gonzalez

LA PUENTE, CA, U.S.A.

U.S. MARINE CORPS

LCPL, E CO, 2D BN,3D MAR,(RCT-7, I MEF FWD), 3D MAR DIV, MCBH KANEOHE BAY, HI

11/14/2006, HADITHAH, IRAQ


LCPL Gonzalez joined the Marine Corps in June 2004 wanting a better life for himself and his family. He was proud of what he was doing. He was proud of being a Marine, of fighting for his country and protecting his family.

Family, friends, and fellow Marines honored a hero Saturday with applause and a standing ovation. Services were held for Mario “Danny” Gonzalez, 21, of La Puente at St. John the Baptist Catholic Church in Baldwin Park.

LCPL Gonzalez was killed November 14th when a roadside bomb exploded near his convoy vehicle in the Anbar province of Iraq.

Dalila Ramirez, 18, spoke lovingly during the service to Danny: “You are everything I ever hoped for in a man. I am thankful to have met you and blessed to have had you in my life.” Dalila and Danny were engaged and to be married next year.

LCPLGonzalez joined the Marine Corps in June 2004.

Pedro Gonzalez, Danny’s cousin, explained that, “He was always so happy when we saw him on leave. He was proud of being a Marine, of fighting for his country and protecting his family.” Pedro keeps a letter his cousin sent him while on duty that made him realize how much Danny looked to him for guidance, and he hopes he comforted him and made an impact on Danny’s life.

“He touched a lot of people’s hearts,” Pedro added as he looked at the large crowd surrounding his cousin’s grave site.

Mario Gonzalez said his son “died for a cause that — to many — is an injustice, and we have learned to resign to the fact that many wonderful people like my son will die if it continues this way.”

The Purple Heart medal was given to Mario Gonzalez and Patricia Arreola for their son’s heroism.

Mario said even though Danny is gone, they still have memories to hold on to — lots of good memories.