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Marine Lance Cpl. Trevor A. Roberts

Died March 24, 2007 Serving During Operation Iraqi Freedom

21, of Oklahoma City; assigned to Marine Forces Reserve’s 2nd Battalion, 14th Marine Regiment, 4th Marine Division, Oklahoma City; died March 24 while conducting combat operations in Anbar province, Iraq.

Funeral service held for Marine

By Sean Murphy

The Associated Press

OKLAHOMA CITY — A U.S. Marine who died in Iraq just 12 days before he was supposed to come home was remembered in funeral services April 2 as being devoted to his church.

The Rev. Rob Olmstead, speaking to about 1,000 people in Eagle Heights Church, recalled Lance Cpl. Trevor A. Roberts going on numerous mission trips, including one to Bangkok the summer before he attended boot camp to work with orphaned children. He said Roberts planned to continue missionary work after his service in the Marines.

“On that trip, something happened in Trevor’s life,” Olmstead said. “Trevor loved being a Marine, but it wasn’t his calling.”

Despite the rigors of war and the tough reputation of Marines, Olmstead said, Roberts never wavered in his faith.

“Trevor lived a paradoxical, counterintuitive, upside-down life,” Olmstead said.

Roberts, 21, of Oklahoma City, was killed March 24 while conducting combat operations in Anbar province in western Iraq when the vehicle he was riding in hit a roadside bomb.

He was assigned to Marine Forces Reserve’s 2nd Battalion, 14th Marine Regiment, 4th Marine Division, at Oklahoma City.

In a blog, or online diary, that he kept while in Iraq, Roberts wrote in an entry titled, “In the blink of an eye,” about how fast life can change.

“Over here, it might be a firefight or a roadside bomb that makes a normal drive a stir of chaos,” Roberts wrote. “It’s funny that the things that happen so rapidly are the ones that usually impact us the most, and the ones we learn the most from.”

The eerie way in which Roberts’ words applied to his own death wasn’t lost on Olmstead.

“Trevor was taken from us in the blink of an eye,” Olmstead said.

Dozens of Marines in dress uniform were in the front of the church and passed by the open, flag-draped casket following the service.

During the service, images chronicling Trevor’s childhood in Oklahoma City flashed on three large screens hanging at the front of the church, showing him with his parents, Chuck and Twyla, and older brother, Nathan.

Brandon Burkholtz, 18, attended the church’s youth ministry and said the older Roberts inspired him to pursue a career in the ministry.

“He looked at everyone the same and didn’t care what anybody thought about him,” Burkholtz said after the service. “He was a huge part of the youth ministry, and he did a lot more than most of us did.

“I wish I could be more like him.”

A 2004 graduate of Westmoore High School, Roberts attended one year at Oklahoma City Community College before leaving for Iraq. He joined the Marine Corps Reserves in his senior year of high school.

Before the service, a handful of people affiliated with the Kansas-based Westboro Baptist Church, which has protested at military funerals across the nation, turned out, but stayed about 200 yards from the church. Police were on hand for security.

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