From Lansing State Journal Published November 24th, 2004:

Schneider: Marine's recent death a direct hit on family

"The Marine Corps made him a man, but he will always be our kid."

Jill Ellsworth of Eaton Rapids was talking about her nephew, Lance Cpl. Justin Ellsworth.

As we reported last week, Lance Cpl. Ellsworth was killed in action Nov. 13 in Fallujah, Iraq. His funeral was Saturday in Delta Township. He was 20.

Justin Ellsworth, who played football and hockey at Mount Pleasant Senior High School, had numerous mid-Michigan ties. I heard from two of them this week - an aunt, Jill Ellsworth, who lives in Eaton Rapids; and a cousin, Tara Ellsworth, who lives in Lansing.

Neither one could let the death of Lance Cpl. Ellsworth pass without public comment. Here's some of what they wanted to say:

Sudden impact

"Justin was a great kid. He loved his family, his country and his friends. He did what he wanted to do, and that was to serve his country. A week before he died he told his father that the U.S. troops in Iraq were doing good and saving lives.

"He wasn't your typical 20-year-old. He told those he loved that he loved them. He was a proud man who has a very proud family."

"You don't have to believe in the war, but please believe in those who are over there. Everyone is someone's loved one.

"I lost my cousin, my friend, but I still believe in every single person in Iraq.

"As the holidays approach, it is especially important for us to show our support. For the troops in combat, and those who aren't, say an extra prayer, and do your best to believe in them - even if you don't believe in the war."

Last modified date and time: 01/17/2005 8:43