MATHIS–Family and friends came out in big numbers to honor and remember the latest Marine from the Coastal Bend to lose his life fighting in the Afghanistan War.
Lance Cpl. Jose Luis Maldonado, a 2007 graduate of Mathis High School, died last Friday when he stepped into a landmine in the Helmand Province in Afghanistan, killing the 21-year-old man.
A candlelight vigil was held for Maldonado at Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Mathis Wednesday night.
“He would never settle for ordinary in his life, so it should be no surprise that his death was extraordinary because he died doing what he loved, which was just protecting his country,” said Jessica Williams, a cousin, in the Caller Times.
Maldonado’s body is expected to arrive back in the Coastal Bend next week.
Maldonado is from Falfurrias, but lived with his aunt and uncle in Mathis during his high school years. So his funeral services will be held in both cities in the Coastal Bend.
The family is planning to hold a rosary and church service for the fallen Marine on December 28 and 29 at Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Mathis.
His body will then be transported to the VFW Hall in Falfurrias on December 29 for visitation. Maldonado will be buried on December 30 at Falfurrias Burial Park at 10 am.
–Manuel De La Rosa, South Texas Tribune, firstname.lastname@example.org
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