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General who led Camp Pendleton Marines into combat named top assistant to secretary of defense

Kellyx  Lt. Gen. John F. Kelly, who led Camp Pendleton Marines into combat in  Baghdad and Tikrit in 2003 and Fallouja in 2004 and later served a year as the top Marine in Iraq, has been named the senior military assistant to Secretary of Defense Robert Gates, the Pentagon announced Friday.

The selection was made by President Obama, upon Gates' recommendation.

Kelly has been serving as commander of Marine Forces Reserve and Marine Forces North based in New Orleans.

Kelly's son Lt. Robert Kelly, assigned to the Camp Pendleton-based 3rd Battalion, 5th Regiment, was killed in combat in the Sangin district of Afghanistan in November. His  older son, Capt. John Kelly, is serving at Twentynine Palms. Both sons served in combat in Iraq.

--Tony Perry in San Diego

Photo: Lt. Gen. John F. Kelly Credit: U.S. Marine Corps

Comments () | Archives (4)

General Kelly is a real Marine, a hero, and a true American. We need more folks like Gen. Kelly in Washington, where we have a bunch of pseudo patriots in congress, such as the entire Cuban-American caucus, and the Tea Party nazis. General Kelly himself served honorably in several combat theaters, yet his sons did the same. This is so unlike former president George H.W. Bush, who as a congressman from Houston, Texas, with his political influence, kept George W., Jeb, and his two other cowards, and spoiled rich brats, from serving in Vietnam, or in the peace time armed forces. As a former 3rd Marine Div grunt in southeast Asia, I salute you Sir.

Great news not just for Marines, but for the Nation!
Semper fidelis!

congratulations sir. i am sorry for the loss of your son. he died a hero and you are to be commended for your accomplishments. war is hard... semper fi.

Congratulations on being named top assistant to the secretary of defense, L.T. Kelly. You deserve this and I'm sure you'll do a wonderful job. I'm a fan of yours.


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