Marine Sgt Daniel Vasselian Dies at Age 27
Marine Sgt. Daniel Vasselian made an impactful statement from Afghanistan shortly before Christmas 2013, in a military video. He loved leading his men and would prefer not doing anything else.
Two days later, Erin, his widow was waiting at Logan Airport tarmac to receive her husband’s casket, with US Marine honor guard escorting the hearse and casket procession.
Early Life and Education
Vasselian was raised in Abington, a town located south of Boston. After graduating high school he joined the Marines shortly thereafter.
He served with the 1st Battalion, 25th Marines and participated in combat operations both in Iraq and Afghanistan, earning the Bronze Star Medal and Combat Action Ribbon as part of his service.
His family remembers him fondly as a fun-loving individual who always looked out for others. He was a loving husband to Erin and father of their three children; also caring brother and friend. A memorial fund has been set up in his name while The Enterprise newspaper announced that an entire square will also be dedicated in his honor in Dover, Delaware.
By age 27, Vasselian had completed three combat tours. He married Erin Doyle from Abington.
He was known for leading his men courageously into perilous situations and showing “relentless resolve and steady courage under fire” during two heliborne operations and 10 combat patrols over two months, according to his Bronze Star medal citation.
His Marines remember him fondly for being professional yet tough when dealing with their Marines; yet also approachable and caring – they recall him fondly as being someone who would go the extra mile for friends and family. Tragically, he died just days before Christmas conducting combat operations in Afghanistan’s Helmand Province; this death marked nearly ten years of service before finally taking his final breath in battle.
Achievement and Honors
Vasselian will always be remembered fondly by his family as someone who cared for people deeply. According to his sister, he was “hilarious” and would do anything for anyone in need. Additionally, Vasselian was also a Marine who dedicated himself to serving his nation.
Erin Vasselian and both parents attended his funeral service in Abington, Massachusetts; thousands lined the streets to pay their respects and stand along his route as his casket passed through town.
Vasselian was posthumously honored with both the Purple Heart and Bronze Star Medals, prompting his family to establish the Daniel Vasselian Foundation to remember and honor his sacrifice. This charity provides support for military families as well as Abington students enrolled in schools within Abington town limits. Money raised through a 5K road race and T-shirts helps fund this cause which strives to “honor hometown heroes, assist veterans, military families and Abington students experiencing financial difficulty”, award scholarships as well as provide other forms of aid.
The quiet of snow-covered streets and seven Marines dressed in dress blues accompanying a casket into St. Bridget Church was symbolic of Christmas spirit lingering after Christmas Day; furthermore, this scene served as a stark reminder of Vasselian and others sacrifices made for Operation Enduring Freedom.
“He lived his life for his wife Erin, his sister Julianne and mother Karen,” according to his sisters in a video tribute.
He received a Bronze Star with combat “V” device for heroism during a mission in Helmand province in 2013, according to his medal citation. Vasselian was born and raised in Abington with his parents Mark and Karen Vasselian as well as siblings Mark, Jeannine, and Julianne – as per his medal citation.
Daniel Vasselian left behind an estimated net worth in the millions. A Marine Corps soldier who served both Iraq and Afghanistan wars, Vasselian was beloved son of Abington, Massachusetts before he tragically passed away during his third tour when ambushed. On December 23, 2013 during his third tour he was ambushed and was ambushed to his death, aged 27 years. He left behind his wife and three children as well as being interred at Mount Vernon Cemetery where his mother often visits his grave site – making him an incredible American hero who served his community greatly! He truly represented America – being considered as role model to many young Marines while considered true friends amongst many local people alike.