MIAMI, FL, USA U.S. Marines LCPL, I CO, 3D BN, 2D MAR, (RCT-5, I MEF FWD), 2D MAR DIV, CAMP LEJEUNE, NC HABBANIYAH, IRAQ 09/24/2006
Lance Corporal Rene Martinez, 20, of Miami was killed Sunday, the military said. Martinez was based at Camp Lejeune, N.C., and assigned to the 3rd Battalion, 2nd Marine Regiment, 2nd Marine Division, II Marine Expeditionary Force. He was deployed to Iraq about three months ago.
Martinez had hoped to study accounting after completing his service, his sister Maria Martinez told The Miami Herald.
Martinez, a mortarman, joined the armed forces in July 2004 and was deployed to Iraq about three months ago. His unit has spent its tour of duty training and working with Iraqi security forces, said 1st Lt. Barry Edwards, a 2nd Marine Division spokesman.
”In doing so, they were denying insurgent strongholds in and around several Iraqi cities,” Edwards said.
Martinez, a graduate of Miami Sunset Senior High, wanted to be a Marine since he was a little boy, his sister Maria ”Gaby” Martinez said.
Martinez, 19, last heard from her big brother on Sept. 13. He was a dedicated service member, but when Rene Martinez spoke with his family, he avoided talking about his experiences in Iraq, his sister said.
Instead, they talked about happier times and future plans. The siblings planned to move back to Miami around the same time, when Gaby Martinez graduates from college in Georgia and when her brother got out of the service.
”He was determined to finish his four years with a good record, then he wanted to come back home and study accounting,” Gaby Martinez said. “He had a good heart.”
Rene Martinez had been assigned to the 2nd Marine Division since January 2005. In that time, he earned medals for combat action, overseas deployment and global terrorism service.
”He was a fairly well decorated Marine for his age,” Edwards said.