What we know about the four California servicemen killed in Kabul airport blast – Los Angeles Times

Of the 13 U.S. army personnel killed Inside the Kabul airport bfinal, 10 have been based mostly at C…….


Of the 13 U.S. army personnel killed Inside the Kabul airport bfinal, 10 have been based mostly at Camp Pendleton.

And A minimal Of 4 had deep roots in California.

This is what All of us know Regarding the native servicemen:

Hunter Lopez | Indio

Lopez, 22, of Coachella Valley is the son of two Riverside County sheriff’s deputies, Capt. Herman Lopez and Deputy Alicia Lopez, Based on A press launch by Sheriff Chad Bianco.

Lopez’s father instructions the Sheriff’s Division’s La Quinta station in Thermal, Based on A press launch by metropolis officers.

“Our La Quinta household is in mourning right now with the tragic Lack of Hunter Lopez,” the assertion said. “We’re all so humbled by the service And supreme sacrifice that Hunter gave To shield our nation. He was a brave and selfless soldier who anshave beend The choice to be a Usa Marine. Like his mom and father, Hunter needed To assist serve completely differents and shield his group.”

Lopez graduated from La Quinta Highschool in 2017 and served with the Sheriff’s Division’s explorer program from September 2014 to August 2017, Bianco said.

Lopez joined the Marine Corps on Sept. 5, 2017, and was assigned to the 2nd Battalion, 1st Marines, the sheriff said.

He deliberate on following in his mom and father’ footsteps and turning Proper into a Riverside County sheriff’s deputy after returning house from his deployment, Bianco said.

The Lopez household requested that donations in Hunter’s reminiscence be made to the Riverside County Deputy Sheriff Aid Basis Inside the identify of the Lopez household. Donations Might be despatched to 21810 Cactus Ave., Riverside, CA 92518.

Kareem Nikoui | Norco

Nikoui, 20, graduated from Norco Highschool in 2019 and served Inside the Junior ROTC, Based on A press launch by The metropolis. He is survived by his mom and father and siblings.

Hours earlier than he died, he despatched movies to his household displaying himself interacting with youthfulsters in Afghanistan.

In Definitely one of many clips, he requested a youthful boy to say howdy.

“Want to take a video collectively, buddy?” Nikoui said, leaning in to take a video of himself with the boy. “All right, we’re heroes now, man.”

Paul Arreola, An in depth household good friend, informed the Associated Press the movies current “The center of this youthful man, the love he has.”

“The household is simply heartbroken,” he said. Arreola described Nikoui as an “superb youthful man” Full of promise who On A daily foundation needed to be a Marine and Acquired Proper down to understand his objective.

“He liked this nation and every thing we stand for. It’s simply so exhausting to know that we’ve misplaced him,” he said, crying.

Norco metropolis officers said Friday they deliberate to enshrine Nikoui’s identify on the “Lest We Overlook Wall” at George A. Ingalls Veterans Memorial Plaza.

Rep. Ken Calvert (R-Corona) praised Nikoui for his service, saying that “phrases are inIn a place to categoricaling our grief and mourning for The scarcity of Lance Cpl. Nikoui and The completely different U.S. service members who have been killed.”

“As a proud Marine, Lance Cpl. Nikoui and his unit put themselves in harm’s method So as To current safety to completely differents. That’s the definition of braveness,” Calvert said. “That’s the embodiment of the Marine Corps motto, ‘Semper fidelis.’ I’ve spoken to the Nikoui household and categoricaled my condolences. The burden they bear is unimaginable.”

Dylan R. Merola | Rancho Cucamonga

Merola, 20, deliberate to go To school and research engineering when he returned to the U.S., Based on KCBS-Tv.

“In all probability The biggest youthfulsters ever,” his mcompletely different informed the station. “Type, loving … he would give something for anyone.”

Cheryl Merola additionally described the final textual content material she received from her son. It study: “I gained’t Be In a place To converse for A quick time, we’re being despatched to A particular location. I actually like you And that i’ll converse to you quickly.”

His demise launched an outpouring of assist.

“Dylan was a beliked son, brcompletely different, grandson, good-grandson, nephew, An excellent good friend, and a brave soldier who paid The final phrase sacrifice On the Abbey Gate at Hamid Karzai Worldwide Airport By way of the evacuation,” Based on a GoFundMe Website looking for donations for his funeral.

Nicole Gee | Sacramento

Marine Sgt. Nicole Gee, standing with an Afghan baby, was killed Thursday Inside the suicide bombing On the Kabul airport.

(Sgt. Isaiah Campbell / U.S. Marine Corps)

Relations said Gee was deeply Devoted to her work in Afghanistan and documented it on social media.

Gee grew up Inside the Sacramento suburb of Roseville and went to Oakmont Highschool. The metropolis of Roseville described her as “housemetropolis hero.” Rep. Doris Matsui (D-Sacramento) said Gee “chosen a path of valor And restore to completely differents — making The final phrase sacrifice. As a nation, we owe her and her household a debt of gratitude.”

Gee’s sister provided a tribute on a GoFundMe Page:

Myself and my household are terribly devasaid with the information of my sister passing. I can confidently converse For everyone who knew and liked my sister, Nicole Gee, that she was such a shiny mild to everyone she touched. Almethods Specializing in positivity and motivating completely differents to do their biggest. She was and On A daily foundation Shall be my goodest inspiration and motivation to be Definitely one of the biggest mannequin on myself that I Might be. I’ve On A daily foundation said she Is utterly The sunshine of my life And that I might do something for her, she was my first biggest good friend, my companion On this loopy life, my absolute hero. There Are not any phrases Which will categorical how a lot she Shall be missed.

The Associated Press currentd an account of her time overseas:

Every week earlier than she was killed, Sgt. Nicole Gee cradled a baby in her arms On the Kabul airport. She posted the photograph on Instagram and wrote, “I actually like my job.”

Gee, 23, was a upkeep technician with the Twenty fourth Marine Expeditionary Unit from Camp Lejeune in North Carolina.

Brig. Gen. Forrest C. Poole III, commanding widespstudy of 2nd Marine Logistics Group, said his unit mourned “the immense Lack of Sgt. Gee” and The completely differents.

Sgt. Mallory Harrison, who lived with Gee For 3 years, wrote about how exhausting the demise hit her.

“I can’t pretty describe The sensation I get As quickly as I strain myself To return again to actuality & Take into consideration how I’m by no means going to see her Once again,” Harrison wrote on Fb. “How her final breath was taken doing what she liked — serving to people. … Then there was an explosion. And Similar to that, she’s gone.”

Gee’s Instagram Website reveals ancompletely different photograph of her in fatigues, holding a rifle subsequent to a line Of people strolling into the stomach Of An monumental transport plane. She wrote: “Escorting evacuees onto the chook.”

The Associated Press, City News Service, Merrie Monteagudo and Shelby Grad contributed to this report.