The Journal Gazette
Wednesday, September 15, 2021 1:00 am

Pence, others laud Marine killed in Afghanistan

Associated Press

LOGANSPORT – A U.S. Marine from Indiana who was killed during the frenzied evacuation at Afghanistan’s Kabul airport was hailed Tuesday as a hero during a funeral in his hometown.

The life of Cpl. Humberto Sanchez will inspire generations of Americans, former Vice President Mike Pence told mourners at Life Gate Church in Logansport.

“No one will ever say it better than his mother did,” said Pence, a former Indiana governor, speaking near Sanchez’s flag-covered casket. “In those final moments of his life, it was a work of heart, doing everything he could to get those kids out of harm’s way.”

Between speakers, a younger brother, Ariel Loran, played the Marines’ hymn on a saxophone.

The service capped days of heavy emotion in the northern Indiana community. Sanchez, known as Bert, was among 17 members of his Logansport High School class who joined the military after their 2017 graduation.

Sanchez, the son of Mexican immigrants, was the first member of his immediate family born in the U.S., said Zach Szmara, pastor of The Bridge Community Church in Logansport.

“His presence brought vibrant color into parts of life that were gray and dull,” Szmara said. “If he wasn’t in the classroom that day or didn’t show up at the event, you could sense it.”

Pence said Sanchez never gave up until the job was done. “He stayed at his post, stood in the gap. ... He gave his life defending innocent civilians fleeing from the chaos.”

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