LCpl. Karl Linn
Marine laid to rest
From the sun-warmed February weather to the coincidental end row gravesite of his Navy grandfather, if it's possible to describe a burial as perfect, much of Lance Cpl. Karl Linn's was Wednesday.
If only the dates were spread out a little further, then it might be easier to appreciate those fortunate aspects. But there's nothing perfect about seeing 1984-2005 etched on a tombstone.
Linn, 20, now rests at the end of the row, to the right of his grandfather, in the old
section of Culpeper National Cemetery.
The Marine reservist died Jan. 26 near Haditha, Iraq, while conducting combat operations.
Three others from Linn's Lynchburg-based unit, the 2nd Platoon, Company C, 4th Engineering Battalion, also died during the ambush attack on their convoy.
The four casualties came on the deadliest day for U.S. troops since the war began.
Family, friends and Linn's fellow Marines made the 90-mile trek from Midlothian, on the outskirts of Richmond, to Culpeper to bury the former Virginia Commonwealth University student.
Marines presented Linn's parents, Richard and Malisa, with the flag following the traditional military burial that included seven Marines ringing out three simultaneous shots and bugle call of Taps.
Linn's mother displayed grief at times during the service, but the father admirably held together, offering kind words to other mourners and a lending hand to his wife when she broke into tears.
He admitted it has been a difficult week for the family.
It's been hard, it hasn't been easy, Richard Linn said. It's going to hit hard for me soon, I know it will.
In an e-mail sent to friends after his son's death, Richard Linn shared the following:
My heart is broken over the loss of my son Karl and his fellow Marines, and I am very concerned about the injured and those still in danger. It must take tremendous strength to carry on under the circumstances. I can't adequately express what I feel, nor the appreciation I have for the sacrifices they are making.
Father and son had discussed Culpeper as a potential burial site should things go tragically wrong while Linn was in Iraq.
Linn requested burial in a national cemetery and Culpeper seemed like a perfect fit because the grandfather is buried there.
In addition to his parents, Linn is survived by his 15-year-old brother, Tan.