U.S. Marine from Laredo died in Kabul airport attack

Smoke rises from a deadly explosion outside the airport in Kabul, Afghanistan, Thursday, Aug. 26, 2021. Two suicide bombers and gunmen have targeted crowds massing near the Kabul airport, in the waning days of a massive airlift that has drawn thousands of people seeking to flee the Taliban takeover of Afghanistan. (AP Photo/Wali Sabawoon)

A Laredo native and service member was among those killed in the Kabul airport attack Thursday, U.S. Rep. Henry Cuellar confirmed Friday.

David Espinoza (Courtesy: George P. Bush Facebook)

U.S. Marine David Espinoza was killed in the twin explosions at the Hamid Karzai International Airport in Kabul, Afghanistan, a news release stated.

“Mr. Espinoza embodied the values of America: grit, dedication, service, and valor,” Cuellar said via the release. “When he joined the military after high school, he did so with the intention of protecting our nation and demonstrating his selfless acts of service. I mourn him and all the fallen heroes in Afghanistan. My heart goes out to the Espinoza family in this extremely difficult time. The brave never die. Mr. Espinoza is a hero.”

Espinoza graduated from Lyndon B. Johnson High School in Laredo in June 2019. He is survived by his brother, mother, Elizabeth Holguin, and stepfather.

In response to the deaths of several U.S. military members killed in the attack, Gov. Greg Abbott today ordered the lowering of Texas flags to half staff.

“What we’re witnessing in Kabul right now is an absolute tragedy. Brave U.S. Marines and soldiers sacrificed everything to protect innocent lives and defend our nation’s principles of freedom and liberty for all. Their families are left grieving the heartbreaking loss of a loved one,” the governor said in a statement. “Please join Cecilia and me in praying for these Marines and soldiers who fought through to the end, for their loved ones, and for all U.S. military members who continue to serve courageously and honorably for our country around the world.”