N.C.-based casualties

From staff and wire reportsMarch 17, 2005 

Bernard Gooden, Marine corporal

CAMP LEJEUNE -- Cpl. Bernard G. Gooden, 22, a Marine based at Camp Lejeune, was shot and killed in a gunbattle in central Iraq, the Pentagon said Monday.

Gooden, who died Friday, was assigned to the 2nd Tank Battalion, 2nd Marine Division. He had previously served in the military in his native Jamaica and in Canada.

Gooden's mother, Carmen Palmer-Thompkins, said Tuesday that he was fascinated by the military, particularly the U.S. Marine Corps, which he thought was "tougher than the Army or the Navy."

The valedictorian at his high school and a straight-A student at York University in Toronto, Canada, Gooden joined the Marines in 2001 as a way to finish his education. He hoped to become a corporate lawyer.

Gooden will be buried in St. Ann, Jamaica.

Brian McPhillips, Marine lieutenant

CAMP LEJEUNE -- First Lt. Brian M. McPhillips, 25, a Marine based at Camp Lejeune, was killed in a firefight in central Iraq, the Pentagon said this week.

McPhillips, who died Friday, was from Pembroke, Mass. He was assigned to the 2nd Tank Battalion, 2nd Marine Division. Flags in Pembroke and at Boston College High School, where McPhillips graduated in 1996, were lowered to half-staff this week in his honor.

In a statement, his parents, David and Julia McPhillips, said their son "served his country with unwavering pride. At this difficult time, we ask for your prayers, specifically for our family, his platoon, for all U.S. servicemen and women, and in general for world peace."

McPhillips is also survived by a younger sister.

Brendon Reiss, Marine sergeant

PORT ANGELES, Wash. -- A Marine missing in Iraq since March 23 was killed in action, his father and stepmother said Tuesday.

Sgt. Brendon Reiss, 23, stationed at Camp Lejeune, N.C., disappeared near a Euphrates River bridge at Nasiriyah, Iraq.

Officials with the Marines contacted family members Tuesday to notify them of Reiss' death, The Peninsula Daily News reported.

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