Iota Marine killed in Afghanistan

By: Howell Dennis
IOTA - Marine Corporal Matthew Richard, 21 of Iota, was killed in Afghanistan doing what he had been dreaming of since he was a small child - protecting our country. Richard, the son of Jeff and Alicia Richard, was a 2008 graduate of Iota High School and was serving his second tour.

“Ever since he was a child he wanted to be a soldier,” said Alicia Richard. “When he was in second grade he wrote a paper called ‘I want to be a soldier.’ In fact, many of the papers he wrote and activities he was involved in during high school were military related.”

“He always told us, he begged us in fact to let him sign up for the Marines early...when he was 17,” she continued. “And he insisted on the Marines.”

One week prior to his 18th birthday, Matthew’s parents granted him his wish and told him he could enlist early.

At approximately 6 a.m. Thursday, the Richards got a visit that no soldier’s parent ever wants to get when three Marines in full dress uniform knocked on their door with the news of their son.

When spoken to Thursday morning, Mrs. Richard seemed remarkably composed which may be due a fact that she seemed to take consolation in.

“He did die a Marine,” she said. “That was always his dream and he went after it with everything he had.”

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