Year in Review: Chase Marta honored as a hero
Editor's note: As we get closer to the end of 2012, it's time to look back at what made news in the Appeal-Democrat over the past year. Over the 10 days ending Dec. 31, we are running stories — in chronological order — on each of our top 10 stories of 2012. Disagree with our choices? You can go to the A-D website at www.appealdemocrat.com and vote for your own top 10 stories from among 20 choices or add your own. We will print the results on Jan. 3.
Thousands lined the streets and a funeral crowded with more than 300 people honored US Army Spc. Chase S. Marta, 24, a graduate of Yuba City High School, killed May 7 in Afghanistan by an improvised explosive device.
"Success in life is not measured by how long we live, but how we live in the time that we are given," Pastor Wayne Vincent said at Ullrey Memorial Chapel in Yuba City. "Chase's has been a beautiful life, a life dedicated to something other than himself."
"In his sacrifice, we all have gained a hero and a model for living and giving ourselves for the good of others," Vincent said.
Marta was a paratrooper in the 82nd Airborne Division, headquartered in Fort Bragg, NC, and assigned to the 73rd Cavalry Regiment, 1st Brigade Combat Team. He was one of three soldiers killed by the explosive device.
"There is no finer warrior, soldier or fighter than a paratrooper," said Brig. Gen. Charles A. Flynn, of Fort Leavenworth, Kan. Flynn said Marta was a three-time volunteer, by signing up not only for the US Army, but volunteering for airborne duty and to be a paratrooper.
"It's very clear to me that Chase in his life made everyone much more rich in their lives. His country and his paratroopers are far richer as well," he said.
Marta was awarded a Purple Heart for wounds received in action, a Bronze Star for meritorious service, an Army Good Conduct Medal, an Afghanistan Campaign Medal, a Global War on Terror Service Ribbon, an Overseas Service Ribbon, a NATO Medal and a Combat Infantryman Badge.
His mother, Karyn Stone Marta, was presented with a Gold Star Banner by the Tri-Counties Blue Star Moms, to signify the loss of a child in service to the country.
"The comfort that I have and my family, is we loved Chase and Chase loved us," Stone Marta said. "I don't have any regrets about not saying it enough. We said it daily."
CONTACT Ryan McCarthy at firstname.lastname@example.org or 749-4780. Find him on Facebook at /ADrmccarthy or on Twitter at @ADrmccarthy.