U.S. Marine Corps/Lance Cpl. Damon Mclean/Released

Marine Pfc. Edward A. Nalazek, a Chicagoan born to proud Polish immigrants, died with nearly 1,000 fellow Marines during the Battle of Tarawa in 1943. He was 27.

A decade later, his namesake nephew was born. Edward McNicholas of Newport News came know the story of Uncle Eddie, but details were scarce. He knew Nalazek was a cum laude college graduate who studied for the priesthood before enlisting in the Marines.

But whenever McNicholas pressed family members for more information, he got nowhere.

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Peter passed away on February 14, 2018 in Parkland FL. He is a hero, having sacrificed his life to protect his friends and classmates. He loved being in the JROTC and planned on attending United States Military Academy West Point. He liked the Houston Rockets, hip-hop music, playing basketball and spending time with his friends. He is survived by his father Kong and mother Hui, and his brothers Jason and Alex and extended family.

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