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Stevenson Ranch Marine killed in Afghanistan

June 1, 2010 12:00:00 AM PDT
Loved ones are mourning the loss of a fallen Marine from Stevenson Ranch, who was killed on duty in Afghanistan during the Memorial Day weekend.A makeshift memorial with more than 50 American flags decorated the front yard of Jake's family home in Stevenson Ranch. Jake graduated from West Ranch High School in 2009 before serving his country as a Marine in Afghanistan where sadly, he was killed Saturday.

"He was a good person. He was loved here. Everybody who met him never forgot him," said Jake's friend Isabelle Soriano.

Jake became the first graduate of his high school to make the ultimate sacrifice for his country.

His flag-draped coffin is on its way home.

"It seems like a dream, but it's reality. There's nothing we can do now. He's with god now," said Jake's friend Josh Vasquez.

"It's been a very, very difficult time for our students, especially for our faculty. They were very close to Jake Suter," said Bob Vincent, principal of West Ranch High School.

Jake and his cousin Joseph Fowler enlisted in the Marine Corps at the same time, but Jake got deployed to Afghanistan first. Fowler will be leaving for a tour of duty in about four months.

"He gave his life for his country. If need be, I'll give my life for mine," Fowler said.

Jake is the second Marine from Stevenson Ranch to die in Afghanistan in 2010. Twenty-five-year-old Ian Gelig was killed in early March. Gelig's hometown funeral was on par with that of a cherished dignitary or a statesman.

Jake's friends say that there are a thousand great things they can about their dear friend, but they say that in death, there is one special word that describes Jake.

"My hero, my veteran, my No. 1," described Soriano.

"Jake is absolutely a hero," said Vincent.

"He's a true hero," said Fowler.

There will be a vigil 7 p.m. Wednesday honoring Jake at his Stevenson Ranch neighborhood.

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