Monday, February 26, 2007

Anthony Aguirre reported killed in Iraq

The knock on the door came before dawn Monday morning.

The Channelview woman who answered knew she was about to get bad news about her baby brother.

"I knew when the doorbell rang at 6, that it was kinda odd because nobody visits at 6 in the morning," said Christina Castillo. "The minute I saw them I knew, I knew what they were there for. I knew."

She was right.

Representatives from the U.S. military informed Castillo that her brother had died in Iraq hours earlier.

Anthony Aguirre, 20, was killed by a roadside bomb around 1:30 a.m. Houston time.

The young Marine was one of three siblings abandoned at an early age and raised by his sister and brother.

"He was a proud Marine.... When he came home for leave, he paraded his uniform around. I would have to tell him, 'Anthony, honey, you're home. You can take it off and put regular clothes on,'" said Christina Castillo.

"He always asked me, 'Do you think I'm doing the right thing?'" said Ernest Salinas, Aguirre's brother. "He would always ask me and I'd tell him 'You're doing a good job. Keep it up.'"

Being a Marine was all he dreamed of.

Still, leaving for Iraq last year on September 11th was difficult.

"When he left, he turned around, he was crying," remembered Salinas. "He got on the airplane and that was it. The last time we'd see him."

Aguirre was deployed to Iraq in September of last year. He was due to come home in April.

He would have turned 21 in three weeks and was recently engaged to another Marine.

From KHOU 11