Reality Check


While we worry with politics, Haiti, special elections in Massachusetts, while our jobs and our kids and our marriages hold our attention, the war keeps going on, with Marines and Soldiers in harm’s way every day.

Marine awaiting Bronze Star killed by IED

A North Carolina-based Marine in line to receive a medal for valor died in Afghanistan on Thursday, according to the Defense Department and media reports. Sgt. Christopher R. Hrbek, 25, a field artillery cannoneer with 3rd Battalion, 10th Marines, out of Camp Lejeune, was killed in Helmand province, according to the Defense Department.

The New Jersey Bergen County Record reports that Hrbek was killed when he stepped on an improvised explosive device.

The Westwood, N.J., native was going to be awarded a Bronze Star with combat “V” for saving the life of his sergeant major, who stepped on an IED under enemy fire Dec. 23, the paper reported.

“I told him, we are proud of you for doing the right thing,” Hrbek’s step-father, Jaymee Hodges, told The Record. “He didn’t think about it, he just did it. He loved being a Marine.”

Hrbek was a local firefighter who joined the Corps in January 2003 in response to the Sept. 11 attacks. His two step-brothers are New York City firefighters, according to The Record.

He served two tours in Iraq between September 2007 and March 2009, according to a II Marine Expeditionary Force release. He planned to become a drill instructor when he returned from deployment this spring, his step-father said.

Semper Fidelis, Sargent Hrbek.

Sacrifice still exists everywhere, and everywhere the elect of each generation suffers for the salvation of the rest.
–Henri Frederic Amiel

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One thought on “Reality Check

  1. More than a decade ago I was a member of the 10th Marine regiment. I have since had the honor of serving the Corps as a contractor in Iraq. I can say without reservation that the men and women that wear the Eagle Globe and Anchor today are far better Marines than I could have ever hoped to be. I am proud of the way they live, and humbled by the way they die. The streets of heaven are well guarded tonight. Semper fi.

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