The Department of Defense announced that another Camp Pendleton-based Marine has died in Afghanistan.
Lance Cpl. Kevin E. Oratowski, 23, was killed Aug. 18 when an improvised explosive device detonated near him in Helmand province. Our media partners the North County Times reports the vehicle Oratowski was riding in was torn apart in the blast.
An Illinois native, Oratowski was on his first combat assignment, assigned to the 1st Marine Expeditionary Force.
He had received several personal service awards including the Purple Heart, Combat Action Ribbon, National Defense Service Medal, Afghanistan Campaign Medal, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal and the Sea Service Deployment Ribbon.
Oratowski, who enlisted in the U.S. Marine Corps in June 2008, is the 34th Southern California-based Marine or sailor to die in combat since January 2010.
Sgt. Jose L. Saenz III, 30, of Pleasanton, Texas was killed Aug. 9 by an IED blast in Helmand Province, according to the U.S. Marine Corps.
Max W. Donahue, 23, was injured Aug. 4 in combat operations in the Southern Helmand province of Afghanistan. The corporal died Aug. 7, according to military officials.
Lt. Col. Mario Carazo, 41, and Major James Weis, 37, died July 22 while supporting combat operations in Helmand province, Afghanistan. Both men were decorated pilots who also served in Iraq.
Staff Sgt. Christopher J. Antonik, 29, of Crystal Lake, Ill., died July 11 in combat in the Helmand province of Afghanistan. He was assigned to the 1st Marine Special Operations Battalion.
Sgt. Joseph D. Caskey, 24, who died June 26, was assigned to the 3rd Battalion, 1st Marine Regiment.
Cpl. Daane A. Deboer, 24, died June 25 in the Helmand province, killed by an improvised explosive device while on foot patrol.