I'm this close to losing my head. Everything's gotten real ugly.
— Jesus Angel Gonzalez, in one of his final letters to his wife, talking about sand storms ripping apart his tent
Gonzalez was born in Mexico into an activist family. In high school, he wore a brown beret and styled himself after Che Guevara. He dropped out of UC Riverside and joined the Marines but later told a family member that he had made a mistake by enlisting.
California's War Dead
is the Los Angeles Times' collection of stories about the 744 California servicemembers and 493 others based in California
who died during the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.
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Edward Balli, 42, Monterey
Matthew R. Rodriguez, 19, Fairhaven, Mass.
Jennifer M. Moreno, 25, San Diego
Landon L. Jones, 35, Lompoc
Jonathan S. Gibson, 32, Aurora, Ore.
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