RALEIGH, N.C. — Military officials are investigating the deaths of two North Carolina-based Marines who were killed in Afghanistan, including one who had ties to Maine.
The Department of Defense reported Monday that 27-year-old Sgt. Kevin B. Balduf of Nashville, Tenn., and 43-year-old Lt. Col. Benjamin J. Palmer of Modesto, Calif., died May 12 in Helmand province.
Maine Sen. Olympia Snowe’s office says Balduf had ties to Maine, where his wife listed Richmond, Maine, as her address.
Balduf was killed during combat operations, according to a press release from Snowe.
“My thoughts and prayers are with the family and loved ones of Sergeant Balduf, who tragically gave his life defending our nation with limitless courage. Indeed, his heroic service to the values we hold most dear, in the most demanding of environments and at such prolonged personal risk and peril, makes words difficult to find. I offer my heartfelt sympathies as we honor the solemn memory of this fallen soldier, who made the ultimate sacrifice on behalf of us all,” Snowe, R-Maine, said in a prepared statement.
Balduf, 27, was serving in Afghanistan as a member of the 8th Communication Battalion, II Marine Headquarters Group, based out of Camp Lejeune, N.C.
Palmer was assigned to Marine Wing Headquarters Squadron 2, 2nd Marine Aircraft Wing, II Marine Expeditionary Force at Cherry Point.