Memorial for marines killed in Marana training exerciesePosted: Updated:
TUCSON, Ariz. -- A modest crowd of military members and their families gathered Saturday in the rainy weather to pay tribute to 19 marines who were killed in a training exercise back in 2000.
Dozens gathered under two small tents to pay their respects to 19 marines who lost their lives in an osprey crash at Marana Regional Airport.
"Training for war, like war itself, puts life at risk in peace and war marines except that risk it is a bond between us," said Commanding Officer Lt. Col. Chris Griffin.
Lieutenant colonel Chris griffin did not know the marines killed eleven years ago during a night time training operation, but with each name read he talked about their character, something unique about each person.
"We remember Private First Class Kenny Paddio a rifleman from the bayou he wanted to stay in the marine corps as long as his mother wanted him to," said Lt. Col. Griffin.
There was a little humor to brighten up an otherwise somber day of mourning and bad weather.
Despite the cold and the rain, each service member stood in form and with proper ceremony, honored the fallen.
"As we remember the passing of these 19 brave souls we recommit ourselves to their memory and those ideals of service and patriotism in which they lived their lives," said Griffin.
The Osprey that went down was conducting a mission in which the crew was practicing non-combatant evacuation drills.