The Afghan War veteran who opened fire on a crowded bar in Thousand Oaks, California, took the life of a fellow Marine.
Dan Manrique, a 33-year-old former Marine Corps radio operator and head of the Ventura County chapter of veterans non-profit Team Red, White & Blue, was among the 12 people shot and killed by 28-year-Marine veteran Ian David Long on Wednesday night, Task & Purpose has confirmed.
Manrique, a native of Thousands Oaks, was supposed to join a group of friends at the Borderline Bar & Grill. Team RWB athletic director Jacklyn Pieper, a childhood friend of Manrique's, told Task & Purpose that Manrique arrived ahead of his friends and entered the bar just "as all hell broke loose."
Manrique served with 2nd Combat Engineer Battalion, 2nd Marine Division, deploying to Afghanistan in 2007 with the 26th Marine Expeditionary Unit. An active member of the Los Angeles-area veterans community, he had been involved with Team RWB since 2012.
"His whole plan was to see the world and get leadership experience, and he was able to do that in those four years [in the Corps]," Pieper told Task & Purpose. "Everything he did was selfless."
Manrique was drawn to service at an early age, volunteering with special needs children at his local church, Pieper told Task & Purpose. After leaving the service, he worked for an LA non-profit that helped provide financial planning assistance for veterans with mental health diagnoses.
Manrique first joined Team RWB as a volunteer and took a full-time position with the organization just months ago, according to Pieper.
"He was all about giving back to the veterans community and creating that community," Pieper told Task & Purpose. "He talked a lot about the isolation that veterans feel when they return home without continuity or consistency, and he just wanted to extend his armed around whoever else felt that."
"His life was about going above and beyond," she said. "His whole life was based around helping others."
Long, the Marine vet who allegedly shot and killed Manrique on Wednesday, served as a machine gunner in the Marine Corps from August 2008 until March 2013 and deployed to Afghanistan from November 2010 to June 2011. He was found dead at the scene from an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound.
Two airmen were administratively punished for drinking at the missile launch control center for 150 nuclear LGM-30G Minuteman III intercontinental ballistic missiles at F.E. Warren Air Force Base in Wyoming, the Air Force confirmed to Task & Purpose on Friday.
Two F-35A Lightning II Joint Strike Fighters recently flew a mission in the Middle East in "beast mode," meaning they were loaded up with as much firepower as they could carry.
The F-35s with the 4th Expeditionary Fighter Squadron took off from Al Dhafra Air Base, United Arab Emirates to execute a mission in support of U.S. forces in Afghanistan, Air Forces Central Command revealed. The fifth-generation fighters sacrificed their high-end stealth to fly with a full loadout of weaponry on their wings.
The U.S. Senate closed out the week before Memorial Day by confirming Gen. James McConville as the Army's new chief of staff and Adm. Bill Moran as the Navy's new chief of naval operations.
McConville, previously vice chief of staff of the Army, was confirmed on Thursday along with his successor, Lt Gen. Joseph Marin. Moran, currently vice chief of naval operations, was confirmed Friday along with his successor, Vice Adm. Robert Burke.
The Pentagon is producing precisely diddly-squat in terms of proof that Iran is behind recent attacks in the Middle East, requiring more U.S. troops be sent to the region.
Adm. Michael Gilday, director of the Joint Staff, said on Friday that the U.S. military is extending the deployment of about 600 troops with four Patriot missile batteries already in the region and sending close to 1,000 other service members to the Middle East in response to an Iranian "campaign" against U.S. forces.