PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — U.S. Marine Sgts. Chris Slutman and Ben Hines have been identified as two of the three Marines killed in a roadside bombing in Afghanistan. On Tuesday, a fellow Marine is paying tribute to his friends.
Monday’s attack brings the total number of U.S. servicemember fatalities in Afghanistan this year to seven. And two of those men killed this week have family ties to our region.
One day after three Marines and a U.S. contractor were killed, firefighters in New York City remembered one of their own.
“Chris was the epitome of what it means to be a New York City firefighter. He was brave, conscientious, dependable and always rose to the occasion,” a fellow firefighter said.
Slutman, 43, a Marine and decorated member of the New York City Fire Department, is from Wilmington, Delaware. He was recently deployed to Afghanistan and died Monday in the Taliban attack.
Slutman’s parents got the news from the Marine Corps Monday night.
“When I turned the porch light on and opened the door, and I saw in uniform, I said, ‘This is not good.’ He said, ‘Can we come in?’ I said, ‘Yes,’ came and sat at the table. He said, ‘Do you want to get your wife?’ And I really didn’t want to until I learned more. I shook my head no and he shook his head yes. So, I called my wife in and then we went through everything and he explained everything,” said Slutman’s father, Fletcher Slutman.
Hines, 31, of York, Pennsylvania, was also killed in the blast. Marine Joseph Triola, of Chalfont, served beside the two men and was close with Hines.
“He was a really, really good guy and devoted to what he did,” Triola said.
Slutman and Hines paid the ultimate sacrifice for the country they loved.
“[Hines] was a tough guy,” Triola said. “You know, times we were out in the field where it was cold and wet, we might be hungry. Most of us might complain a little bit, but you wouldn’t hear from him.”
Cpl. Robert Hendriks, 25, from Locust Valley, New York, was also killed in the blast.
Slutman and his family moved to Wilmington three years ago. It’s where he met his wife and started to raise their three girls.