Monday, August 06, 2007

Cristian Rojas-Gallego dies 'of wounds sustained when an improvised explosive device detonated near his vehicle'

A former Georgia Marine who joined the U.S. Army to support his growing family has been killed in Iraq less than a year after re-enlisting.

Spc. Cristian Rojas-Gallego, 24, of Loganville was one of three soldiers who died Thursday in Baghdad after an improvised explosive device detonated near their vehicle, the Department of Defense confirmed Monday.

child, said Eduardo Rojas, one of his three siblings.

The soldier had been unable to make enough money to support his family through the odd jobs he worked after leaving the Marine Corps, his brother said. Rojas-Gallego served four years as a Marine, including three tours in Iraq.

He served in the infantry, having first enlisted at age 19.

The Iraq war interrupted Rojas-Gallego's efforts to earn a high school diploma while a Marine, his brother said.

Rojas-Gallego's awards and decorations include the Army Commendation Medal, Navy-Marine Corps Presidential Unit Citation, Marine Corps Good Conduct Medal, National Defense Service Medal, Iraq Campaign Medal, Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, Army Service Ribbon, Navy Sea Service Deployment Ribbon and Combat Infantryman Badge.

From the Journal Constitution