Lance Cpl. Brandon T. Lara

Lance Cpl. Brandon T. Lara, 20, of New Braunfels, Texas, died July 19 while supporting combat operations in Anbar province, Iraq. He was assigned to 3rd Battalion, 4th Marine Regiment, 1st Marine Division, I Marine Expeditionary Force, Camp Pendleton, Calif.

“I never thought this was going to happen,” said Gloria Lara, the marine's mother. Gloria Lara said her son was pursuing a childhood dream of serving his country as a Marine when he was killed. “I just want people to know that we are very proud of him and he’s going to be remembered," she said. "He’s the kind of person that, just by meeting him one time, people would remember him.”

Lara enlisted in the Marine Corps in December of 2006, and previously toured Iraq from February 2008 to September of 2008. His previous service awards included the National Defense Service Medal, Iraq Campaign Medal, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal and the Sea Service Deployment Ribbon

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Marine Saluting Courtesy Sgt Michal S. Williams

He lives alone In the hills and the trees
He bares his soul To the cool mountain breeze
He talks to the Spirit He listens to the Wind
They shield him from memories Buried deep within
The world has forgotten The sacrifice he made
The scars he bears remind him Of the high price he paid
Freedom is not given But with blood it has been bought
By warriors such as he And by the wars they fought
We can't forget our warriors Or let them die in vain
But with respect and honor We can help to ease their pain
Our Freedom will be taken If no one will defend
God bless our Forgotten Warriors Who live to fight again.

God and the soldier all men adore
in times of trouble, but no more.
For when war is ended and all things righted,
God is neglected, the old soldier slighted.