Trio of Kaneohe Marines die in Iraq
Families remember warriors who were killed in Al Anbar
Marine Lance Cpl. Michael D. Scholl never got to hold his daughter, who was born a month after he left Kaneohe Bay in September. He was killed in Iraq on Tuesday.
Scholl, 21, of Lincoln, Neb., was the third Kaneohe Marine from the 2nd Battalion, 3rd Regiment, to die in Al Anbar province this week. Friends said Scholl was killed by a roadside bomb.
Also killed in Al Anbar on Tuesday were Lance Cpl. Mario D. Gonzalez, 21, of La Puente, Calif., and Lance Cpl. Timothy W. Brown, 21, of Sacramento, Calif.
It is not known whether the three Marines were killed in the same operation or whether they were together when they died. There were no details on how Brown and Gonzalez were killed.
The 2nd Battalion has lost 11 Marines since it arrived in Iraq in September.
Gonzalez joined the Marine Corps in June 2004 and reported to Hawaii in October 2004. He was deployed to Afghanistan with the 2nd Battalion from May 2005 to January 2006. He deployed to Iraq in September 2006.
Scholl enlisted in the Marine Corps in June 2004 and reported to Hawaii in November 2004. He also deployed to Afghanistan with 2nd Battalion in May 2005. He deployed to Iraq in September 2006.
Erich Kaiser, who told KOLN/KGIN-TV in Lincoln that he was a friend of Scholl's, said Scholl was married the day before he left for a tour in Afghanistan. Two weeks after leaving for the tour in Iraq, Kaiser said, Scholl's daughter was born. Scholl left for Iraq one month before her birth.
Scholl's wife, Melissa, and daughter, Addison, live in Washington state, the station said.
Scholl was in Iraq helping rebuild an oil refinery when his Humvee ran over a bomb, his family said. It was the event his father Steven Scholl said he always feared.
"Deep in your heart you always wonder if you're gonna get that call -- that it was your son," he told the TV station.
Debora Chandler told the station that her son, Mike Scholl, recorded stories and songs he sang for his daughter. "He called every day to talk to his wife and baby daughter," said Chandler.
His family remembers how they at first hoped Scholl wouldn't join the Marines.
"We tried to talk him out of it. About all the repercussions. But he still wanted to do it. He did assure me. ... He told me, 'We have a job to do and we're needed out here,' " the elder Scholl said.
Brown's family on Wednesday described the Kaneohe Marine as a prankster and an athlete who was a was a wrestler in high school.
Brown's fiancee, Ashley Milami, told KCRA television in Sacramento that the Marine, whom she had known since they were 15, "would always tell me I was his soul mate and the love of his life and I felt the same way. I'm just going to miss his personality and his smile."
His mother, Susan Brown, who is battling cancer, told the NBC television station that her son had given her hope "to dance at his wedding."
"Joining the Marines, he was proud. When he came home I saw a man, not a little boy that had left, but they made him into a man, a man that I really respected. And I felt that he wanted to be there to honor his country and he said, "No matter what, Mom, I'm there for our freedom,' " Brown said.