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Since 2001, 2114 U.S. troops have lost their lives while serving in Afghanistan, and since 2003, 4486 U.S. troops have lost their lives while serving in Iraq.

The IGTNT (I Got The News Today) series is a reminder that nearly every day, somebody gets the heartbreaking news that a friend, former classmate, or beloved family member will not be coming home from war.

Tonight we remember a Marine and a Soldier who died far from home:

Lance Cpl. Alec R. Terwiske, 21, of Dubois, Indiana
Pfc. Shane W. Cantu, 20, of Corunna, Michigan

Please take a moment below to remember them,
and all those who have lost their lives in these wars.

The Department of Defense confirmed the death of a Marine in an IED explosion:

Lance Cpl. Alec R. Terwiske, 21, of Dubois, Indiana

Lance Cpl. Terwiske died September 3 while conducting combat operations in Helmand province, Afghanistan. He was assigned to a mobile assault company with the 1st Combat Engineer Battalion, 1st Marine Division, I Marine Expeditionary Force, based at Camp Pendleton, California.

American flags lined the Dubois, Indiana town streets where Alec Terwiske grew up, as family and friends gathered at the Terwiske family home to remember the young Marine killed by a roadside bomb.

Alec graduated from Northeast Dubois High School in 2010, and joined the Marines shortly afterward.

Lance Cpl. Terwiske deployed to Afghanistan on his first tour of duty last April.
His mother said she had spoken with him just last week, according to a report in Indianapolis Star.

This week his heart-broken parents, Sandy and Alan, traveled to Dover AFB to meet the plane that brought the young Marine's remains home.

Sources The North County Times
and DuBois County Free Press

Among those Lance Cpl. Terwiske leaves behind are his mother and father, and his other family and friends in Dubois.

Lance Cpl. Alec R. Terwiske is missed. May he rest in Peace.

The Department of Defense confirmed the death of a Soldier killed by hostile fire:

Pfc. Shane W. Cantu, 20, of Corunna, Michigan

Pfc. Cantu died August 28, in Charkh, Afghanistan, of wounds suffered when he was hit by shrapnel. Pfc. Cantu was assigned to 1st Battalion, 503rd Infantry Regiment, 173rd Airborne Brigade Combat Team, Caserma Ederle, based at Vicenza, Italy.

Shane Cantu grew up in Coruuna, Michigan, a small town located between Lansing and Flint. He graduated from Corunna High School in 2010. Students and teachers remembered Shane as a popular student who was a fearless leader on the football field.

Pfc. Cantu's remains were transported on a charter jet to Bishop Airport in Flint Thursday. According to the story at Michigan LIVE:

After the casket was put in the hearse, family members surrounded it, many putting a hand and their heads on it to pay their respects. An American flag hung over the outstretched ladder of a fire truck, and several law enforcement officers saluted during the ceremony.

Clutching a photo of her son in his Army uniform, Jennifer Clarke cried in front of the hearse as her husband Michael held her in support.

County sheriff's departments, local police and Michigan State Police departments escorted the body back to the small town of Corunna, along with 50 members of the Michigan Honor Guard who led the procession on their motorcycles.

Cantu's girlfriend's uncle Frank Marietta, 58, drove his motorcycle from St. Charles to help with the escort. He didn't get a chance to meet Cantu, but he said his niece was very happy with him.

"I heard he was a super nice guy," he said to Michigan LIVE.

"A lot of times, we forget it's war until it hits home like this."

Pfc. Cantu's funeral will held at the Corunna High School football field where he led the team. Earlier, hundreds of people attended the candle light vigil held at the football field. They formed a circle around the track, holding candles to create a ring of light to honor their friend Shane who died while serving.

During the vigil, his family looked on as an American flag was raised by Corunna VFW Post 4005 members, a bell tolled and songs, including the national anthem, were played, reported the ARGUS Press.

Among those Pfc. Cantu leaves behind are his mother and stepfather, his girlfriend, and his other family and friends in Corunna.

Pfc. Shane W. Cantu is missed. May he rest in Peace.

* * *

Thanks to Timroff for our faithfully lighted candle IGTNT logo;
Other Photos by CalNM and linked Sources

Helping our troops: If you wish to assist our military and their families, consider Operation Helmet, or sponsoring a deployed service member at Fisher House provides housing for families of injured troops and veterans who are recovering in hospitals, and Guardian angels for soldierspet assists the animal companions of our deployed military.

When our veterans come back home, they can find support at Welcome Back Veterans. Our recently returned veterans need jobs, and Veterans Green Jobs is now hiring for positions and filling training sessions. VGJ corps retrains veterans as leaders in forest and resource conservation, green construction, and energy efficient upgrades of homes in rural areas. Encourage a Veteran, and see if you can help out.

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About the IGTNT series: I Got the News Today is intended to honor, respect, and remember the fallen, and to remind us that each casualty has family and friends who received the terrible news that their loved one has died at war.

Diaries about the fallen usually appear two days after their names are officially released, which allows time for the IGTNT team to find and tell their stories. The US Department of Defense news releases are found at defense gov/releases. Icasualties lists the names of those killed, and shows the number of wounded. Published AP photos of the returning war fatalities are found on the Dover AFB page. Click the IGTNT tags below for previous diaries in the series which was begun by i dunno, and which is maintained by monkeybiz, noweasels, blue jersey mom, Chacounne, twilight falling, joyful, roses, SisTwo, a girl in MI, Spam Nunn, JeNoCo, Janos Nation, True Blue Majority, Proud Mom and Grandma, Sandy on Signal, Wide Awake in Kentucky, Ms Wings, maggiejean, JaxDem, and me, CalNM. These diaries are heartbreaking to write, but are an important service to those who have died, and show our community’s respect for our fallen brothers and sisters.

Please bear in mind that these diaries are read by friends and family of the service members chronicled here. May all of our remembrances be full of compassion rather than politics.
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