Four Who Also Shaped Events

Local Heroes Shouldering Global Burdens

It is easy, even tempting, to think of them all as old, tough-as-leather Marines. But they were also Army and Navy, cooks and drivers, pilots and paratroopers. Most of them were young, and had never seen combat before.

The Marines' sacrifice in Beirut was disproportionate: 220 of the 241 killed in the headquarters bombing, plus 16 more hit by snipers and shrapnel. All told this year, 278 Americans who had volunteered to serve their country in uniform returned home from combat in coffins. The week most of them...

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