Tuesday, November 16, 2004

Five more Pendleton dead identified

By: GIG CONAUGHTON - Staff Writer

U.S. Marine officials released the names Monday of five more Camp Pendleton-based Marines killed in the fighting in or around Fallujah, Iraq.

Officials said that Sgt. Byron W. Norwood, 25; Lance Cpl. Benjamin S. Bryan, 23; Lance Cpl. Victor R. Lu, 22; Lance Cpl. Justin Ellsworth, 20; and Lance Cpl. Justin D. McLeese, 19, were killed in action in the al Anbar province Saturday.

Military leaders have estimated that 31 American troops and six Iraqi soldiers were killed in the fighting in Fallujah. Earlier, they estimated that 1,200 guerrillas were killed.

All five fallen Marines whose names were released Monday served with the various sections of 1 Marine Expeditionary Force, Camp Pendleton's main fighting force.

Norwood, Bryan, Lu and McLeese were all members of the 3rd Battalion, 1st Marine Regiment, 1st Marine Division.

Ellsworth was with the Combat Service Support Battalion 1, Combat Service Support Group 11, 1st Force Service Support Group.

Norwood and Bryan were both serving their second tours of duty in Iraq.

Norwood came from Pflugerville, Texas. An assaultman, he joined the Marine Corps July 6, 1998. He earned several awards, including the Humanitarian Service Medal and Combat Action Ribbon.

Bryan, a rifleman, lived in Lumberton, N.C. He joined the Marines six months after the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks and was honored with several awards during his service, including the Combat Action Ribbon and the National Defense Medal.

Lu, a rifleman, lived in Los Angeles and joined the Marines Dec. 17, 2002. He was also honored with several awards, including the National Defense Service Medal.

Ellsworth, a combat engineer, was from Mount Pleasant, Mich. He joined the Marines Sept. 15, 2003, and was awarded the National Defense Service Medal.

McLeese, the youngest of the five Marines, was a rifleman. He joined the Marine Corps Oct. 6 2003 and was awarded the National Defense Service Medal.

As of Monday, military officials reported that 1,194 U.S. troops had been killed in Iraq.

Contact staff writer Gig Conaughton at (760) 739-6696 or

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