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Published December 05, 2009, 07:41 PM

EGF Family & Friends Remember Marine

The family of a Marine from East Grand Forks is mourning the loss of their son and brother.

By: David Schwab, WDAZ

The family of a Marine from East Grand Forks is mourning the loss of their son and brother.

Corporal Ryan Pape died on Thursday at Camp Pendleton in California where he was stationed.

This is the second loss of a military son in just a few years.

There are few details right now about how Marine Ryan Pape died, but it has been reported that Pape died during a night training exercise involving a parachute jump.

Parents Ron and Shar Pape of East Grand Forks were notified yesterday of the 23-year-old's death.

“I use the word crushing.That is what it feels like. It’s certainly very difficult when any family absorbs one, tremendously unfair to the Papes, who are such a great family, who spent more time overseas in combat,” says Mike McNamara.

We talked with Grand Forks City Councilman and talk show host Mike McNamara who served with Ryan's older brother Riley Pape. Riley died in May 2005 in a motorcycle accident in California. He says both brothers served their country with much honor.

“He’s just a great selfless young guy. You could not ask for a better person. I know the Marine Corp. doesn't get any better than Ryan and Riley. It was a terrible loss,” say McNamara.

Following the paths of his older brothers, Ryan Pape had served tours in Iraq. McNamara says Ryan had just re-enlisted into the Marines this summer, looking for yet another opportunity to serve his country.

“He idolized his brothers, and he heard their stories and the things they had seen and done. I think very much he very much wanted to sit at the table with them as guys who had fought for their country,” says McNamara.

McNamara says Ryan had a great personality and loved his family very much.

He adds that with the two brothers gone now, it's a great loss to the community.

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