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Remembering the 54 Arizonans who died during Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan

The website MilitaryTimes put together a database of the 2,347 military members who died during the 14-year Afghanistan operation. Here are the Arizonans listed.

KABUL, Afghanistan — It's been nearly 20 years since the Sept. 11 attacks. The event changed the world and its effects continue to be seen today, most recently with the withdrawal of American troops from Afghanistan.

It'll be up to future historians to record the consequences of the Taliban's retaking of the nation, but past wounds are still fresh among the families who had loved ones die during the conflict.

The United States launched Operation Enduring Freedom, starting the War on Terror, on Oct. 7, 2001, in response to the events of the Sept. 11 attacks.

In the following 14 years, 2,347 U.S. military members died. Among those were 54 Arizonans.

The following are the names and hometowns of each Arizonan who died during the operation that ran from Oct. 7, 2001 to Dec. 14, 2014. The names were cataloged on MilitaryTimes' Honor The Fallen website.

Army Cpl. Patrick D. Tillman

Hometown: Chandler
Age at the time of death: 27
Date of death: April 22, 2004

"It is my hope that his memory should always remind people that we must come together," Marie Tillman said to CNN host Brian Stelter in 2017.

"The very action of self-expression and the freedom to speak from one’s heart – no matter those views – is what Pat and so many other Americans have given their lives for."

RELATED: Pat Tillman jersey returned to the U.S. from Afghanistan

Army Spc. Hugo V. Mendoza

Hometown: Glendale
Age at the time of death: 29
Date of death: Oct. 26, 2017

“The last Christmas and New Year that we spent together, he was thinking on making it a career,” said Mendoza’s older brother Carlos. “He enjoyed the military so much he was thinking about staying the full 20 [years].”

“I just miss him, it’s so hard,” said Carlos Mendoza.

RELATED: 'It's about time': Family of Phoenix troop killed in Afghanistan applauds move to pull soldiers

Army Spc. Christian M. Adams

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Hometown: Sierra Vista
Age at the time of death: 26
Date of death: June 11, 2010

"He joined the military shortly after high school as a vehicle mechanic, served three years, left the military briefly, then re-enlisted in the infantry," Arizona's Run for the Fallen website said.

"He leaves his wife, Amanda, a daughter, Faith, and his mother, Donna among others."

Army Sgt. 1st Class Martin R. Apolinar

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Hometown: Glendale
Age at the time of death: 28
Date of death: May 29, 2011

"Sgt. 1st Class Martin R. Apolinar died May 29 when the vehicle he was traveling in, while on a mounted patrol, struck an improvised explosive device," the Green Beret Foundation said on its website. "Apolinar is survived by his wife Elisa; his son Martin, and his parents Gene and Susan Apolinar of Prescott."

Army Command Sgt. Maj. Martin R. Barreras

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Hometown: Tucson
Age at the time of death: 49
Date of death: May 13, 2014

"Martin is survived by his wife, three children, three grandchildren, and familia," the Dignity Memorial website said.  

"His integrity, leadership, strength, determination and humor will be greatly missed. His service to his community, men and country was greatly appreciated."

Army Staff Sgt. Richard L. Berry

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Hometown: Scottsdale
Age at the time of death: 27
Date of death: July 22, 2012

"More than just a celebrated soldier, Ricky was a loving husband, son, brother and friend," the Arizona Run for the Fallen's website said.

"He is survived by his wife Laureen Lopez Berry; parents Richard & Patricia Berry; brother Christopher Berry; brother James Berry of Chandler, AZ; Grandparents Harlan & Shirley Willmann of Mesa, AZ and his family, friends and colleagues whose lives he immeasurably touched."

Air Force Staff Sgt. Timothy L. Bowles

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Hometown: Tucson
Age at the time of death: 24
Date of death: Mar. 15, 2009

"[Bowles]is survived by his father, Retired Air Force Master Sgt. Louis Bowles, his mother Lisa, who live in Glorieta, New Mexico," the Arizona Run for the Fallen's website said.

"He is also survived by his sister Heather Ketchmark, who lives on Hunter Army Airfield in Georgia with her husband, Daniel."  

Marine Lance Cpl. Randy R. Braggs

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Hometown: Sierra Vista
Age at the time of death: 21
Date of death: Nov. 6, 2010

"He was assigned to the 3rd Battalion, 5th Marine Regiment, 1st Marine Division, I Marine Expeditionary Force, Camp Pendleton, Calif," the Arizona Run for the Fallen's website said.

"He was preceded in death by his mother, Diana."

Marine Lance Cpl. Matthew J. Broehm

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Hometown: Flagstaff
Age at the time of death: 22
Date of death: Nov. 4, 2010

"His biggest dream was to become a youth pastor and to share Jesus Christ with all the youth," the Arizona Run for the Fallen's website said.

"He leaves behind his devoted wife Lianna, that will always love him, his father, mother, sister and two brothers, all from the Williams area."

Army Staff Sgt. Charles R. Browning

Credit: National Guard Association

Hometown: Tucson
Age at the time of death: 31
Date of death: June 1, 2007

"[Browning] was posthumously promoted to Staff Sergeant," the Arizona National Guard Association's website said.

"He was married to Lisa and had 2 step-daughters, Jessica and Briana."

Navy Hospitalman Dustin K. Burnett

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Hometown: Fort Mohave
Age at the time of death: 19
Date of death: June 20, 2008

"Fellow soldiers called him Doc and he loved the fact he would be taking care of people," the Arizona Run for the Fallen's website said.

"Dustin was a happy, energetic and always smiling young man who wanted to go to college when he got home from the Navy."

Army Sgt. Aaron B. Cruttenden

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Hometown: Mesa
Age at the time of death: 25
Date of death: Nov. 7, 2010

"He is survived by his daughter, Dusti-Rai Ferrin, of Nucla; his parents Yvonne and Scott Featheringill, of Hotchkiss, and by Steve Cruttenden and Annette Roth of Lake Odessa, Mich.," the Arizona Run for the Fallen's website said.

"He is also survived by his grandparents Lin and Shirley Wencel of Apache Jct., Ariz., and Frank and Pat Cruttenden of Delta, Mich."

Marine Staff Sgt. Jonathan D. Davis

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Hometown: Kayenta
Age at the time of death: 34
Date of death: Feb. 22, 2013

"Among those in attendance to honor the memory of the fallen warrior were the Navajo-Hopi Honor Riders, who led the procession to the place of Davis's internment," Indian Country Today reported on its website.

Army Pfc. Ara T. Deysie

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Hometown: Parker
Age at the time of death: 18
Date of death: May 9, 2008

"Tyler is survived by his mother, four sisters, and six nieces and nephews. Tyler’s father died of accidental causes nearly six years ago," an Associated Press story from the time of his death reported.

"Messages from friends and family were posted on Tyler’s MySpace.com page, where he had posted dozens of pictures of himself in uniform and with guns."

Army Spc. Robert Donevski

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Hometown: Sun City
Age at the time of death: 19
Date of death: Jan. 16, 2010

"His passions were boxing, fishing, the outdoors, and spending time with family and friends," the Arizona Run for the Fallen's website said.

"He leaves behind father and mother, Ganko & Linda Donevski; brother, Christopher Donevski; grandfather, Risto Dineff; uncle, Richard Dineff; aunt, Christine Dineff; and cousins, Sarah Dineff, Rachel Dineff, and Nicole Dineff."

Army Spc. Michael D. Elm

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Hometown: Phoenix
Age at the time of death: 25
Date of death: Oct. 14, 2011

"He served as a counselor for the Boy Scouts at Camp Geronimo where he earned his NRA sharp shooter’s designation the same day that he first fired a gun," the Time of Remembrance website said.

"Michael had a sense of humor that could not be matched. He was a loving son, brother, nephew and god parent."

Navy Hospital Corpsman 3rd Class Kyler L. Estrada

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Hometown: Maricopa
Age at the time of death: 21
Date of death: Feb. 14, 2012

"His Mantra 'I fix Broke Marines,' the Arizona Run for the Fallen's website said.

"Survivors include his parents Mario and Clarin; his wife Alyssa; 4 sisters, 1 niece and grandparents on both sides of the family."

Army Spc. Dustin J. Feldhaus

Credit: Dignity Memorial

Hometown: Glendale
Age at the time of death: 20
Date of death: Mar. 29, 2011

"Dustin was loved by all who knew him for his unselfish nature and kind heart," the Dignity Memorial website said.  

"He will be forever missed and remembered as a true American Hero."

Army Cpl. Charles P. Gaffney Jr.

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Hometown: Phoenix
Age at the time of death: 43
Date of death: Dec. 24, 2008

"Some members of his family were very concerned about his return to the Army, but Charles insisted he needed to fight for people's rights around the world," the Arizona Run for the Fallen's website said.

"His passion was his family, wife, Latticia, and twin 4-year-old daughters."

Army Staff Sgt. Justin T. Gallegos

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Hometown: Tucson
Age at the time of death: 27
Date of death: Oct. 3, 2009

"Justin Timothy Gallegos was the son of Edward H. and Josefina 'Yolanda' Gallegos," the Military Hall of Honor website said.

"He attended Tucson (Arizona) High School and, in December 2000, graduated from Aztec Middle College at the West Pima Campus."

 Army Pvt. Joseph F. Gonzales

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Hometown: Tucson
Age at the time of death: 18
Date of death: Sept. 20, 2008

"Always interested in the military, he left school and enrolled at Project Challenge, a military school in Queen's Creek supported by the Arizona National Guard," the Arizona Run for the Fallen's website said.

"He attended Sierra Middle School and played football while attending Sunnyside High School."

Army Staff Sgt. Carl E. Hammar

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Hometown: Lake Havasu City
Age at the time of death: 24
Date of death: July 14, 2012

“The depth of their sacrifice is too often taken for granted until we learn of a tragedy such as this," former Arizona Governor Jan Brewer said in a statement when Hammar's death was announced.

"Today is a stark reminder to honor their service and never stop praying for their safety."

Army Spc. Adam J. Hardt

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Hometown: Avondale
Age at the time of death: 19
Date of death: Mar. 22, 2009

"Adam enjoyed sports and school and planned on getting a degree in Astrophysics or Physics after his six-year commitment with the Army ended," the Arizona Run for the Fallen's website said.

Army Sgt. 1st Class Todd M. Harris

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Hometown: Tucson
Age at the time of death: 37
Date of death: Nov. 3, 2010

The City of Tucson named one of its sports complexes after Harris.

"Army Sgt. 1st Class Todd M. Harris was a native Tucsonan who graduated from Sahuaro High School in 1992," the city's website said. 

"Growing up in Tucson Todd participated in several sports including Tucson Youth Football, Pop Warner Football, Pantano Soccer League and high school sports."

Army Staff Sgt. Brian S. Hobbs

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Hometown: Mesa
Age at the time of death: 28
Date of death: Oct. 14, 2004

"Hobbs married his high school sweetheart, Jennifer, soon after basic training." the 5th Infantry Regiment Association's website said. 

"They later had a girl, followed by two boys."

Army Master Sgt. David L. Hurt

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Hometown: Tucson
Age at the time of death: 36
Date of death: Feb. 20, 2009

"Hurt, a native of Oak Park, Ill., volunteered for military service and entered the Army in November 1992, as a Combat Engineer trainee," the Green Beret Foundation's website said.

"Hurt is survived by his wife Kelly, daughter Avery and son Wyatt, all of Grays Creek, N.C.; mother Bonnie Hurt of Hope Mills, N.C. and father Joe Hurt of Memphis, Tenn."

Army Capt. Cory J. Jenkins

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Hometown: Mesa
Age at the time of death: 30
Date of death: Aug. 25, 2009

"[Jenkins] character was exhibited in the classroom just as it was with his dedication to his country," said Michael Goodwin, chair of the A.T. Still University PA Program when news of Jenkins' death came out. 

"He was an excellent academic student, but by far he was even a better person."

Army Pfc. John C. Johnson

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Hometown: Phoenix
Age at the time of death: 28
Date of death: May 27, 2011

"Corey was an experienced hunter and tracker, who grew up fishing and hunting in Arizona’s high country," reporting from The Arizona Republic said at the time of his death.

"He is survived by his wife, two children, and his mother and father."

Marine Lance Cpl. Kevin B. Joyce

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Hometown: Ganado
Age at the time of death: 19
Date of death: June 25, 2005

"You are a true Navajo Warrior. You will always be remembered by your people, the Dine. Semper Fidelis, brother," said JW Yazzie, a USMC veteran, on the Fallen Hero's Project website.

"LCPL Joyce leaves behind his mother Effelita George, an older brother, Nathan, a younger sister, Michelle, his maternal grandparents, Dan and Bessie George of Klagetoh and other family members and friends," the website said.

Army Staff Sgt. Eric J. Lindstrom

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Hometown: Flagstaff
Age at the time of death: 27
Date of death: July 12, 2009

"He was active in Boy Scout Troop #33 and achieved the rank of Eagle Scout. He was also a member of the Federated Community Church and enjoyed playing baseball while growing up," the Arizona Run for the Fallen's website said.

"Eric is survived by his wife, Tara; his daughters Riley and Olivia; his mother Kathy; his father Ric; step-brother Jake; and grandmother Mary O'Hara."

Marine Lance Cpl. Juan Lopez-Castaneda

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Hometown: Mesa
Age at the time of death: 19
Date of death: Aug. 14, 2008

"Lance Cpl. Juan Lopez-Castaneda, 19, of Mesa, Ariz.; was assigned to the 2nd Battalion, 7th Marine Regiment, 1st Marine Division, I Marine Expeditionary Force, Twentynine Palms, Calif.," the Arizona Run for the Fallen's website said.

Army Sgt. Martin A. Lugo

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Hometown: Tucson
Age at the time of death: 24
Date of death: Aug. 19, 2010

"Sgt. Lugo was a phenomenal warrior who was universally respected by every member of this command," the Arizona Run for the Fallen's website said.

"He is survived by his father, Martin Lugo; his mother Maria Marin; and, his sister Leslie Lugo, all of Tucson, Ariz."

Army Spc. Wyatt J. Martin

Credit: Dignity Memorial

Hometown: Mesa
Age at the time of death: 22
Date of death: Dec. 12, 2014

"Wyatt joined the Army because he wanted to give back," the Dignity Memorial website said.

"Wyatt planned to go to Michigan State University and then become a fish and game officer."

Army Sgt. 1st Class Johnathan B. McCain

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Hometown: Apache Junction
Age at the time of death: 38
Date of death: Nov. 13, 2011

"He was a loving husband a wonderful father," the Arizona Run for the Fallen's website said.

"He is survived by his wife Leanne (McKinney) McCain of Mesa, AZ, Children Breanna, Ashlyn, Chloe and Wyatt."

Army Chief Warrant Officer 3 Hershel D. McCants Jr.

Credit: Arlington Cemetery

Hometown: Not listed
Age at the time of death: 33
Date of death: Feb. 18, 2007

"He is survived by his wife, Shannon, son, Trevor, and daughter, Kylie," said a Fort Bragg press release at the time of his death.

"McCants’ mother, Goldie Murphy, and father, Hershel D. McCants, Sr., also survive him."

Marine Cpl. Phillip D. McGeath

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Hometown: Glendale
Age at the time of death: 25
Date of death: Jan. 18, 2012

"Philip wanted to join the Marine Corps ever since his family spent a few years in Okinawa, Japan, while his father, David McGeath, served as an airman," the Travis Manion Foundation's website said.

"You could trust him completely. Even if it surprised you, you always knew it was from the heart. Just straight-up love and concern."

Army Sgt. 1st Class Barett W. McNabb

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Hometown: Chino Valley
Age at the time of death: 33
Date of death: June 12, 2012

"He was originally from the small, rural town of Chino Valley, Arizona, and he attended Chino Valley High School, where he played varsity football," the Time of Remembrance website said.

"He was also a husband and father."

Army Pfc. Mykel F. Miller

Credit: National Guard Association

Hometown: Phoenix
Age at the time of death: 19
Date of death: Sept. 7, 2007

"Mykel Filip Miller was born in Phoenix and lived in Ahwatukee, Arizona with his mother Maria, stepfather David and 2 young step-brothers, CJ and Jacob," the National Guard Association of Arizona's website said.

Army Spc. Christopher J. Moon

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Hometown: Tucson
Age at the time of death: 20
Date of death: July 13, 2010

"Chris starred at Tucson High School, was the 2006 Southern Arizona Player of the Year and earned a scholarship to the UA. Following his first semester, he left school and enlisted in the Army in 2008," the Arizona Run of the Fallen's website said.

"But even with pro prospects in sight and a full scholarship to the University of Arizona with a chance to start as a freshman on the preseason number one team in the nation, this field of dreams began to fade."

Army Spc. Scott J. Mullen

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Hometown: Tucson
Age at the time of death: 22
Date of death: Oct. 14, 2005

"A resident of Tucson, Ariz., Mullen began his Army career October 30, 2003," the Arizona Run for the Fallen's website said.

"Mullen is survived by his mother and father, Wanda and Harold, of Bayfield, Colo.; and his brother, Carl, of Fort Sill, Okla."

Navy Chief Cryptologic Technician (SW) Christian M. Pike

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Hometown: Peoria
Age at the time of death: 31
Date of death: March, 13, 2013

"Christian Pike’s family had a history of service in the military," the Navy Cryptology's website said.

"His grandfather served in the Navy, his uncle was a Green Beret in Army Special Forces and his mother was an Army cryptologic technician."

Army Staff Sgt. Thomas D. Rabjohn

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Hometown: Litchfield Park
Age at the time of death: 39
Date of death: Oct. 3, 2009

"He was married to Nikki, and had three daughters, Kylee, Koree, and Kelsee," the Arizona National Guard Association's website said.

"He served in the United States Marine Corps as a Rifleman from 1989 to 1993."

Army Sgt. John M. Rogers

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Hometown: Scottsdale
Age at the time of death: 26
Date of death: June 27, 2010

"John resided in Scottsdale, AZ and was an Arizona native, to which he was extremely proud of," the Arizona Run for the Fallen's website said.

"John is survived by his sister Kayla Reynolds, niece Alyssa Reynolds, Grandparents Bill and Jean Stuart."

Army Sgt. Kenneth G. Ross

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Hometown: Peoria
Age at the time of death: 24
Date of death: Sept. 25, 2005

"At the time of his death, he was a helicopter mechanic, acting as a door gunner on his last mission," the Arizona Run for the Fallen's website said.

"He is survived by his parents, David and Mary Margaret (Peggy) Ross of Tucson, and sister, Stephanie of Denver."

Army 1st Lt. Jonam J. Russell

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Hometown: Peoria
Age at the time of death: 24
Date of death: Sept. 25, 2005

"He was the brother of five siblings raised by loving parents that provided them with a homeschooled education and a Godly foundation by which to live his life," the Westcott Funeral Home's website said.

"He will be best remembered for his loyalty. Jonam was an inspiration to people as he helped them to live to the utmost."

Army Sgt. 1st Class Ryan J. Savard

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Hometown: Sierra Vista
Age at the time of death: 29
Date of death: Oct. 13, 2012

"Savard was born on Feb. 27, 1983, in Salt Lake City, Utah and graduated in 2001 from Buena High School in Sierra Vista, Ariz.," the Arizona Run for the Fallen's website said.

"Savard is survived by his spouse, Kayla Savard and parents Garett and Marie Savard."

Army Chief Warrant Officer 2 Joshua B. Silverman

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Hometown: Scottsdale
Age at the time of death: 35
Date of death: Dec. 18, 2013

Silverman was one of the six soldiers killed in a helicopter crash in Afghanistan on Dec. 18, 2013. 

The families of Silverman and the other soldiers have since been notified that it was enemy gunfire that caused the helicopter to crash. The soldiers were honored during a memorial service at Fort Riley, Kan. on Jan. 9, 2014.

Army 2nd Lt. Justin L. Sisson

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Hometown: Phoenix
Age at the time of death: 23
Date of death: June 3, 2013

"He was always happy and had a big smile for everyone," Arizona's Run for the Fallen's website said.

"Justin wanted to be in the Army since he was a child, and chose to follow in the footsteps of his Grandfather's, and great Grandfathers because he especially loved his country."

Army Staff Sgt. Orion N. Sparks

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Hometown: Tucson
Age at the time of death: 29
Date of death: Sept. 26, 2012

Sparks “touched the lives of many soldiers during his time in Anvil," Lt. Col. Whit Wright said in a statement to the Time of Remembrance website.

"He is remembered as a contagious optimist who was always in good spirits."

Army Staff Sgt. Donald V. Stacy

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Hometown: Avondale
Age at the time of death: 23
Date of death: June 28, 2011

"SSGT Stacy was raised in Avondale, AZ.  He graduated from Agua Fria High School in 2005.  He enlisted in the United States Army right after graduation," the Thompson Funeral Chapel's website said.

"He was born July 10, 1987 in Phoenix, AZ to Felicia Denise Escobedo (then Stacy) and Donald Lee Stacy II."

Army 1st Lt. Alejo R. Thompson

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Hometown: Yuma
Age at the time of death: 30
Date of death: May 11, 2012

"A Fort Carson soldier from Arizona who was killed in Afghanistan is being remembered as someone who earned respect quietly," the Associated Press reported.

"Survivors include his wife, son and daughter."

Army Pfc. Barbara Vieyra

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Hometown: Mesa
Age at the time of death: 22
Date of death: Sept. 18, 2010

"She is survived by her daughter Evelyn Vieyra, her parents Raul & Elizabeth Vieyra," the Arizona Run for the Fallen's website said.

"She was preceded in death by her nephew Carlos Cardenas who passed away September 14, 2008."

Army Sgt. 1st Class Glen J. Whetten

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Hometown: Mesa
Age at the time of death: 31
Date of death: March 12, 2010

"SFC Glen Jacob Whetten was born March 19, 1978 in Nuevo Casas Grandes, Chihuahua, Mexico, and was raised in Phoenix, Arizona, attending Roosevelt Elementary Schools and graduating from South Mountain High School," the Arizona Run for the Fallen's website said.

"Jake was intensely patriotic, and was always determined to protect his fellow soldiers and defend American liberty."

Marine Lance Cpl. Alejandro J. Yazzie

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Hometown: Rock Point
Age at the time of death: 23
Date of death:  Feb. 16, 2010

" Alejandro, nicknamed "Poncho", was a 2004 graduate of Rock Point Community School in Rock Point, Arizona, where he was president of the school's rodeo club, played football and enjoyed bull riding," the Arizona Run for the Fallen's website said.

The Navajo Nation service member was "always physically and mentally strong but also kind and caring."

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