Marine Lance Cpl. Brandon Garabrant, 19, was one of three U.S. service members killed by a roadside bomb Friday morning, reported WBZ-TV in Boston.
Garabrant also caused a stir last year when his request to wear his uniform at his graduation from ConVal Regional High School in Peterborough, New Hampshire, was denied.
The school told Garabrant then that he could wear his uniform if it was hidden, citing the student council’s desire that all students wear their caps and gowns.
ConVal released a statement reacting to Garabrant’s death: “On behalf of the entire ConVal community I extend my deepest sympathy to Brandon’s family and friends,” Principal Brian Pickering said. “We are all shocked and deeply saddened by his passing and we are incredibly grateful for his service to our country.”
“The entire State of New Hampshire is devastated by the tragic loss of Lance Corporal Brandon Garabrant, who was bravely serving his nation in Afghanistan,” Governor Maggie Hassan said in a statement. “Our service men and women courageously sacrifice every day to protect their fellow citizens and defend the enduring value of freedom that is our very core, and in doing so, Lance Corporal Garabrant made the ultimate sacrifice.”
Garabrant’s experience last June was rather unique: He was graduating from boot camp on a Friday and then high school the very next day. Of the school’s decision denying Garabrant’s request, Pickering told WMUR last year, “I think this decision is reasonable and it’s fair, but I certainly understand there are strong opinions both ways, and I respect that.”