Local service honors SEAL Lee

News staff writer

August 16, 2006

Hood River County residents are invited to attend a memorial service to honor a hometown hero on Saturday, Aug. 26.

The ceremony to pay respects to Navy Petty Officer 2nd Class Marc Alan Lee will take place at 11 a.m. in the Expo Center. Lee, 28, was killed Aug. 2 while saving fellow SEAL team members during a fierce fire fight in Ramadi, Iraq.

“He left the safety and security of his family to serve his country. He left the security of his position to save the life of his fellow SEALs. He will be remembered as one of Hood River’s finest and one of America’s bravest,” said U.S. Rep. Greg Walden.

“Thank God for courageous patriots such as Marc Lee. Our freedoms depend upon those like him who answer our nation’s call. My prayers are with him and his family.”

Walden, who lives in Hood River, plans to attend the service that blends military tradition with a Christian message. Asst. Pastor Doug Iverson of Calvary Chapel in The Dalles will officiate. State dignitaries joining Walden include Sen. Rick Metsger and Rep. Patti Smith. Gov. Ted Kulongoski is also expected to attend.

The American Legion, First Baptist Church of Hood River and area military families are coordinating the event with Debbie Lee, mother of the fallen sailor, and his older brother, Kris.

Rodger Schock, former county commission chair, is raising money to defray the Lee family’s travel expenses. In December, Debbie moved from Hood River to Arizona after years of running the Kids R Us private preschool and kindergarten.

“This is a very generous community and I think we all want to do something to show our support — and this account offers one way to do that,” said Schock.

Marc was home-schooled for much of his education but attended Summit Christian School (now Horizon Christian School) and played soccer at Hood River Valley High School. He enlisted in the Navy in May 2001 and officially took his place on one of the elite SEAL teams in March 2004.

Lee was killed by machine gun fire while covering the evacuation of two injured SEALs in a battle with insurgents. A Stars and Stripes article published on Aug. 3 described that battle as one of the largest campaigns led by U.S. forces to seek out and eliminate insurgent strongholds in the heart of downtown Ramadi.

Lee reportedly mounted an offensive action as a diversion after one SEAL was hit in the face by flying shrapnel and another was wounded in the shoulder. Two more of his teammates were pinned down by gunfire inside the same building.

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Parkdale third graders sing "12 Disaster Days of Christmas"

Welcome to your sing-able Christmas gift list. What follows is an emergency rendition of “12 Days of Christmas” – for outfitting your home or car in case of snow storm, earthquake, flood or other emergency. Read it as a simple list, or sing it to the tune of “12 Days” – you know, as in “ … and a partridge in a pear tree…” Not to make light of it, but the song is a familiar framework for a set of gift ideas that you could consider gathering together, even if the recipient already owns items such as a bunch of coats, tire chains and flashlights. Stores throughout the Gorge are stocked up on all these items. Buying all 12 days might be prohibitive, but here are three ideas for checking any of the dozen off your list (notations follow, 1-12.) The gift items needed to stay warm, dry and safe are also coded to suggest items in your abode (A) in your car (C) or both (B). 12 Gallons of Water (A) 11 Family meals (B) 10 Cans of propane (A) 9 Hygiene bags (B) 8 Packs of batteries (A) 7 Spare coats (B) 6 Bright red flares (C) 5 Cozy blankets (B) 4 Tire chains (C) 3 Flashlights (B) 2 cell phone chargers (B) 1 And a crush-proof first aid kit (B) Price ranges? Here’s a few quotes for days Three, Two, Four and Nine: n A family gift of flashlights (three will run $15-30, Hood River Supply, Tum-A-Lum) n Cell phone chargers (two will run $30-60) n Tire chains (basic set, $30, Les Schwab, returnable if unused for the winter) n Family meals ($100 or so should cover the basics for three or four reasonably well-fed days) n The home kit should be kept in a handy place near an exit, and remember that water needs to be replenished every few months. If you have a solid first aid kit already, switch out the gift idea with “and-a-sto-o-u-t- tub-for it-all …” Otherwise, it’s a case of assembling your home or car kits and making sure all members of the family know what the resources are and how to use them (ie flares and propane). Emergency situations are at worst life-threatening, at best deeply uncomfortable if you and your family are left without power for an extended period, or traveling and find yourself in a situation where you need to wait out a storm, lengthy traffic delay, or other crisis. Notes on the 12 gift ideas: 12 – Gallons of water: that’s one per person in a four-member family to last for three days, the recommended minimum to be prepared for utility outages. 11 – Easy-open packaged goods, energy bars, dried food and nuts are good things to include for nutrition. Think of what your family of four needs for three days to stay fortified and hydrated (see number 12). Can-opener also recommended 10 – If you have a propane camping stove, keep extra fuel handy. 9 – Hygiene bags: put packaged moistened towelettes, toilet paper, and plastic ties in large garbage bags (for personal sanitation) Resource list courtesy of Hood River County Emergency Management, Barbara Ayers, manager/ 541-386-1213. The county also reminds residents to Get a Kit, Make A Plan to connect your family if separated, and Stay Informed. See www.co.hood-river.or.us to opt-in for citizen alerts. Enlarge

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