Heroes: We Now Know the Identities of Five U.S. Service Members Killed in Kabul Terrorist Attack

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Posted: Aug 27, 2021 5:00 PM

The identities of the U.S. military members who were killed in Kabul in a terrorist attack on Thursday are starting to be revealed as the Department of Defense has notified their next of kin.

The Marine Corps confirmed on Friday 11 Marines are among the 13 service members who were killed in the attack that is suspected to have been carried out by ISIS-K.

Here are the known U.S. deaths as of Friday:

Rylee McCollum, a Marine from Wyoming on his first deployment.

Roice McCollum, Rylee's older sister, said he was expecting a baby in three weeks, according to the Casper Star-Tribune. "He wanted to be a Marine his whole life and carried around his rifle in his diapers and cowboy boots," McCollum's sister said. "He was determined to be in infantry... Rylee wanted to be a history teacher and a wrestling coach when he finished serving his country. He's a tough, kind, loving kid who made an impact on everyone he met. His joke and wit brought so much joy."

David Lee Espinoza, 20, a Marine from Rio Bravo, Texas.

Kareem Nikoui, a Marine from California. 

Steve, his father, told the Daily Beast when the Marines came to his home to inform him of his son's death, they were "more choked up than me. I was actually trying to console them. But at the same time, I just wanted them to get out as soon as possible so that no one from my family came back and saw them. I thought it appropriate that I be able to tell them." Of his son, Steve said Kareem “loved what he was doing, he always wanted to be a Marine."

Jared Schmitz, a Marine from Wentzville, Missouri. 

Schmitz's father, Mark, told KMOX his son was on his first deployment in Jordan when his unit was sent to Kabul to secure the airport. "His life meant so much more. I’m so incredibly devastated that I won’t be able to see the man that he was very quickly growing into becoming."

Max Soviak, a Navy Corpsman from Ohio.

The Sandusky Register reported Navy Corpsman Max Soviak was the one Navy death. Soviak was a Class of 2017 graduate of Edison High School, where he was on the honor roll and played football.

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