Saturday, April 7, 2007

March 21, 2007, A Heart Breaking Day

Taken from my myspace Blog

March 21, 2007:
A day I will never forget. On March 22 I received the call. A call that no one ever wants to hear. My nephew Cpl Dustin Jerome Lee had been killed in Falluja Iraq, March 21, 2007. He was stationed with Headquarters Battalion, Marine Corps Logistics Base, Albany Ga and served a Marine Corps K-9 officer. I didn't want to belive it, it couldn't be. I just received an email from him a few days before, and he had left a message with his father mearly hours before. Lisa and I cried and wept till we felt as though we had cried all the tears from our souls. With no sleep, I left for home the next morning. I walked into the house and felt my knees get weak as I glanced over at the pictures of Dustin placed on the tables. I didn't want to let go of my sister. As a former Marine myself I could only feel guilt that it was not me instead of him. I still wish it would have been me rather than him. So young, had his life planned out. One of the last things he told me on the phone before he left was that he just wanted to be married and raise a family. And now he'll never get that chance. He used to call me all the time for that "uncle advice" We where more like brothers than uncle/nephew. He was-IS a Marine and always will be. He will be among all other Marines that have gone before him whom have made the ultimate sacrifice in battle. He was 20 years old and would be 21 on April 7. Although I am very proud of him, as is the rest of the family-My heart breaks knowing that I will never again receive one of his emails or phone calls. His personality was like a magnet, you had no choice but to love the guy. He loved to laugh. I recall when we went to see Bruce Almighty at the theater in Meridian, MS. We where both nearly in the floor laughing so hard. I can see him in my mind's eye as if he where right here next me. I honestly don't know how things will ever be normal without him here. He was such a big part of all our lives. My heart aches knowing the pain that his mother and father must carry around with them. The support from the great citizens of Stonewall, Enterprise, Quitman and many other towns in Mississippi has been overwhelming and heart-felt. The Patriot Gaurd Riders, and all of Mississippi's finest law enforcement agencies showed so much love to our family thats its nearly incomprehendable. I only wish our entire country could support our troops as they have. As we made our way through the small towns following behind the hearse in a mile long procession of Patriot Gaurd Riders and police cars and bikes , we passed people young and old, black and white, with thier flags waving and tears in their eyes. The childrens' small hands coming up to a salute as we drove slowly by brought tears to my eyes as we passed them. It was hard to hold back the emotions as we saw this outpouring of love from our small communities. He was buried on Saturday March 31 with full military honors. I was dressed in my Blues to honor him and gave one last Slow Hand Salute as I passed his casket for the last time. I am so proud of you and love you. lil brother, I will miss you everyday. Semper Fi -brian

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