HAWTHORNE, Nev. (AP) - A 21-year-old Marine from Ohio was among the seven who died after a mortar shell explosion during mountain warfare training in Nevada's high desert.
Marine Lance Cpl. Josh Taylor's grandfather, Larry Stephens, confirmed Wednesday that he was killed in the training exercise Monday night.
Stephens says his grandson fulfilled a nearly lifelong dream when he joined the military right after graduating from high school in Marietta, Ohio in 2010.
Stephens says his grandson had talked about being a Marine since he was about 5, watching the History Channel and studying the military. After joining, he worked with mortars and served tours in Afghanistan and Kuwait, and was preparing for another tour in Afghanistan.
Stephens calls Taylor "polite, respectful," and says he would "do anything for anybody."
Taylor was engaged to be married, with a wedding planned for May.
WESTPORT, Conn. (AP) - The grandfather of a Connecticut native says his grandson was one of the seven Marines killed.
Jerome Muchnick of Philadelphia told The Associated Press on Wednesday that his grandson, 23-year-old Roger Muchnick, grew up in Westport and was a graduate of Staples High School. He says his grandson served in Afghanistan and was thinking about going to college after the Marines.
He says Roger Muchnick's father and mother moved out of Westport a few years ago to North Carolina and Florida, respectively.
Jerome Muchnick says his grandson was a vibrant, loving man and he's devastated by his death.
Funeral services haven't been announced.
The Marines killed on Monday night were based at Camp Lejeune, N.C. The explosion's cause remains under investigation.