2nd Force Service Support Group, II Marine Expeditionary Force
Supporting: Operation Iraqi Freedom
Died: November 1, 2005
Married, 3 children
High School: Channel Islands High (Oxnard)
Foreign Country of Birth: Philippines
Burial: Ivy Lawn Memorial Park, Ventura
As a child, Allan C. Espiritu and his two younger brothers dressed up as soldiers and spent hours playing "war" in the backyard of their Oxnard home.
Years later, Espiritu achieved his childhood dream of serving in the military, first becoming a Navy medic and then helping Marines detonate roadside bombs.
It was one of those devices that killed him Oct. 31 near Ramadi, Iraq, while on his second tour of duty.
He was assigned to the 2nd Force Service Support Group (Forward), 2nd Marine Expeditionary Force (Forward)...
The eldest of three boys, Espiritu loved to play soldier as a child, and the three brothers would paint their faces in camouflage and run around the yard for hours, said his brother Neil, 27.
"We would have our BB guns and paint our faces to save the world," he said. "We thought it was something because we were athletic and competitive."
Relatives said Espiritu was a quiet man with a deep spiritual side and a loving father who saw his family and his career as the cornerstones of his life.
Espiritu was especially proud of being able to buy a new two-story house for his family in the Riverside County city of Menifee, which is within commuting distance of Camp Pendleton.
He had been married to his second wife, Theresa, 25, also a Navy petty officer second class, for less than a year. They had moved into the house in July, Neil Espiritu said.
"His dream was to have a home for his family because he didn't want his kids growing up in a military environment," his brother said. "He wanted them to have a normal life."
Espiritu doted on his daughters -- Alissa, 8; Melanie, 7; and Alexy, 5 -- and taught them to ride bikes this past summer.
"He loved to take care of them," his brother said. "It was in his nature, he was so caring."
Read the entire LA Times article about Navy Petty Officer 2nd Class Allan M. Cundanga Espiritu here. Read more here, here and here and visit Navy Petty Officer 2nd Class Allan M. Cundanga Espiritu's Guest Book here.
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