Lt. Col. Eric Blanchard made it clear to those crowded into the Trail Christian Fellowship church this morning the kind of Marine they had come to memorialize.
If he had it within his power, he would have a thousand like Cpl. Nicholas "Nick" James Sell in his command, the officer told those assembled.
"He was an outstanding young Marine," said Blanchard, commanding officer of the corporal's unit in the 3rd Amphibious Battalion, based at Camp Pendleton, Calif.
"Know that there are 1,400 Marines and sailors in his unit who are hurting today," he added. "We will always be faithful to his memory."
The officer was among 20 Marines from the unit who attended the memorial for Sell, 21, a 2010 graduate of Eagle Point High School, who died Sept. 16 in a vehicle accident during training at the Marine Corps Air Ground Combat Center in Twentynine Palms, Calif. The accident occurred in the desert some 130 miles east of Los Angeles. Four others were injured in the accident, including three who were treated and released from the base hospital.A near-capacity crowd gathered this morning to share stories of the Marine, who worked his way through the Cub and Boy Scouts to become an Eagle Scout. He was remembered for his sense of humor, contagious laugh and strong religious faith.
Sell, who joined the Corps right after high school, served in Afghanistan in 2012. His awards included the Afghanistan Campaign Medal, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, Sea Service Deployment Ribbon and the National Defense Service Medal.
He is survived by parents Randy and Kathy Sell of Eagle Point and brothers Jeff and Beau Macy.
— Paul Fattig