This is reposted from Boom3, Saturday, July 3, 2010.
Thinking about this picture taken at the Veterans Day Parade last November, standing curbside at the Ritchie Valens Rec Center in Pacoima, when the Ramirez family motored by, offering all of us there a moment to view this portrait honoring their beloved Lance Corporal Rogelio A. Ramirez, age 21.
Been thinking about the Ramirez family, thinking of their unspeakable grief, their familial pride, their own bravery, been thinking about young Rogelio Ramirez, since that day.
Independence Day weekend seems an appropriate time to post this Gold Star photograph.
Ramirez's father came to the U.S. from El Salvador. He had been a member of a local militia during the civil war there and tried to talk his son out of enlisting. But Ramirez was determined, working two years to retire debts and even removing a small gang tattoo from his hand with scissors.
Requiescat In Pace.When he walked out that door, he walked out whole. He had himself together. He had purpose. He was determined. I wouldn't have taken that from him.— Irene Ramirez, mother
Rogelio A. Ramirez, 21
Marines, Lance Corporal
Based: Camp Pendleton
1st Battalion, 1st Marines, 1st Marine Division, I Marine Expeditionary Force
Supporting: Operation Iraqi Freedom
Died: August 26, 2007
Single, 1 child
High School: Pasadena High (Pasadena)
Burial: Mountain View Cemetery, Altadena
If you'd like additional information about Lance Corporal Rogelio A. Ramirez,
look here, here or here.