Fallen Heroes of Operation Iraqi Freedom

Remembering the servicemembers who died in the service of their country.

Marine Maj. Jay Thomas Aubin

36, of Waterville, Maine.
He was assigned to the Marine Aviation Weapons and Tactics Squadron —1, 3rd Marine Aircraft Wing, Marine Corps Air Station, Yuma, Ariz. Died on March 20, 2003.

His father flew puddle-jumpers in the Maine woods, and Aubin began riding with him in the cockpit when he was 2. He joined the Marines right after high school, hoping to become a fighter pilot, but his eyesight fell just short, so he settled for flying helicopters. Aubin—married to a Marine, with a son and a daughter—became one of the first casualties of the war when his CH-46 Sea Knight chopper crashed in Kuwait.

Source: MSNBC/Newsweek

Please send information, photos, and corrections for Marine Maj. Jay Thomas Aubin.


Maine town remembers boy who grew up flying
Contributions to the Families of the Fallen


Leave a message in memory of this servicemember, and/or to the loved ones left behind.

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"Jay, 19 years and we still will never forget the sacrifice you made for the freedom we cherrish. rest easy brother. semper fi."
Scott of maine

"It's been 18 years since your heroic sacrifice, and yet it feels like yesterday. Rest easy brother and semper fi."
scott of maine

"It's always a sad day when those of us who've had the privilege to have served with Major Austin come together to remember him. His impact was much more than a Marine. The truth of who he was is proven though the continued outpouring of love, respect and testimonials posted year after year throughout social media. With respect and admiration those of us who've loved him understand that he will never be forgotten."
Wayne Cowan MGySgt ret. of Dayton, OH

"Maj, I'm still in the dirt keeping the enemy at bay, we are challenged all the time and I try to keep your best virtues in the forefront on my decision making. Missed and not forgotten!"
MSgt Cochise S. Diaz of Al Udeid, QATAR

"Salute to Marine Maj. Jay Thomas Aubin. Thank you for your service. crazy games unblocked"
Lucille F. Parham of Los Angeles

"Its been 14 years since the horrific news. I just dropped in to say hi brother. This is your day "sweet pea" RIP and you are a true hero."
scott of sanford, Me.

"I first met you when you were a Capt. at HMM-265. You would talk about the days when you were enlisted, and always strived to lead your Marines away from making a bad decision, or something that they would end up regretting later on in life. Although it's been years since you have passed away. Many of us will never forget what you did for us, and what you allowed us to achieve through your mentorship.
Thank you!"
GySgt Alberto T. Burgos of Poughkeepsie, New York

"Miss you Sir I often talk about you and your influence on me being fresh to the fleet. I will never forget the things you taught me and honor your memory and sacrafice"
Stephen Edward Morgan of Bridgeport WV

"I served with Jay in VMA(AW) 242 in El Toro, CA. Jay always had a smile on his face and was a helluva Marine!
Rest in Peace Brother!"
GySgt J Ryan of Texas

"I have no wise words to share I am just proud to have served with Jay, running around the Ranger flight deck."
Rick Lindberg of Patuxent River Md

"Jay and I served together in VMA(AW)121. He was always quick with a smile or laugh. Most people don't realize how much spending 3 months at sea takes a toll on a person mentally and physically when you work 12 hours a day (7 days a week). I never once heard Jay complain about anything. This is a credit to his parents and personal selflessness. Rest easy Marine and thank you for your service. Cpl. Dan Boston. Seat Shop"
Dan Boston of NAS Meridian Mississippi

"Thanks Jay for your sacrifice, friendship back in the days when you were at El Toro and for standing up for us in me and Frank's wedding. You are not forgotten!!"
Michelle Arriola of Hacienda Heights, Ca

"Thank you Sir for the wonderful memories of my time with HMM-265. You were an inspiration and a pleasure to serve with. You are missed, by more people than you realize. You have touched the hearts and souls of many fine Marines, and will continue to do so through the values you taught as a Marine Officer to your young Marines. Rest in Peace Sir."
J. Hicks of Ohio

"Thank you Sir for the wonderful memories of my time with HMM-265. You were an inspiration and a pleasure to serve with. You are missed, by more people than you realize. You have touched the hearts and souls of many fine Marines, and will continue to do so through the values you taught as a Marine Officer to your young Marines. Rest in Peace Sir."
J. Hicks of Ohio

"Another memorial day weekend approaches and I will continue to miss one of my great friends. Until we meet again Jay, semper Fi"
Scott of Maine

"I served under captain Aubin in okinawa in 1999. He was the most respected of all the officers by us enlisted guys. I had a great talk with him once and am saddened to hear of his passing."
ateef of san francisco, california

"You will never be forgotten. Thank you for your service to our country."
The Inglis family of San Diego

"I knew Jay when we were in VMA-542.
Semper Fi Jay you are missed."
John Ryan (USMC, Ret) of Fort Worth, TX

"As another memorial day passes I just want to let you know that you are not forgotten my friend. You are in my thoughts and your family is always in my prayers. Keep heavens gates secure, until we meet again. SEMPER FI "SWEET pEA"."
Scott of Maine

"Thinking of you today Jay. Thank you for your service, courage and friendship. I wear a memorial bracelet daily in your memory."
Donnie Etheridge of Edmond, Ok

"My brother went through flight school with Jay. I remember when he learned that Jay died. I don't know what to say."
Lucas Strange of Pineville, la

"To the family of Jay, I ride with the Patriot Guard Riders and it was my honor to lay a Wreath on Jay's grave site today. Thank you for his service to our country. RIP Jay"
pete camarda of San Diego, CA

"Years later, I wrote about you in a Leadership course im taking in a Master Program. I was asked to write about a leader and I have seen many but none were more willing to run with the troops than you. I'll continue trying to emulate your leadership style and traits.

In thought! RIP"
Sgt Cochise Diaz of HMM-265/364 OIF I

You are still missed. Semper Fi."
LtCol John Neville of Patuxent River, MD

"To the family and friends of Jay Aubin.:
Corporal Jay Aubin and I served together in VMA-121(Green Knights) from when I was there from late 1986 to when I left 1988 after our WestPac-1987 on the USS Ranger.
I didn’t find out about his death until recently. I’m very sorry for the loss of a great Marine, Father, and friend.
I remember him well as a Plane Captain. I will always remember that Jay had an ear-to-ear grin on his face that made you smile no matter what your mood was. He always had a smile, and was always helping someone. He had a great sense of humor and will always be missed."
MSgt Lawrence Trujillo of Waco TX

"I had the honor of meeting Jay when we shared the same barracks at Cherry Point back in '91. Other than a few conversations in the lobby we never really got to know each other but as mentioned throughout this memorial I knew I that I to had met a special person. I remember his caring personality, smile and the fact that he treated me like he had known me for years. I find myself thinking of Jay and his family again today as I have many times since his death. To Jay's family, you should be very proud not only for Jay's service to his country but for the person he was and the impact he had on so many people without even realizing it. He is the best of us. Today, I ordered a memorial bracklet in Jay's honor and I hope that it will remind me to strive to be as good a person as Jay and to impact people's lives as Jay did.
Semper Fi my friend. You will not be forgotten."
Donnie Etheridge of Edmond, Ok

"Hard to believe it's been 10 years. I think of Jay from time to time, what a great friend to have had and to have grown up with. He was taken way too soon, but the time he spent with us was quality."
Christopher Carbone of Portland, ME

"On the 10th anniversary of your death I would just like to say thank you to you and all the other men who were on that '46 with you. And to your family and loved ones, I wish to extend my deepest sympathy. After reading all the reflections left here for you all I can say is that I wish that I had had the honor and privilege of serving with you when I was in the Marines.

Semper Fi Devil Dog!"

"It's been 10 years today since you left us, and it still feels like yesterday. I love and miss you so much. There will never be anyone in my life that will fill the spot that you have and always have had in my heart.I still think of you everyday. All those special moments we had I hold very close to my heart. I know you walk with me every day, and your spirit will always live on. thank you for being such a big part of my life. with lots of love from your god son, cousin and most of all my best friend"
Brett L Corson of Skowhegan Me

"Jay, it's hard to believe that it's been exactly 10 years since you were killed in that helicopter crash in the Kuwaiti desert. I promised myself that I was going to come down to Fort Rosecrans today to visit your grave, but I just couldn't make it, I'm sorry. I'll try to come down as soon as things are better, but it's just been really tough lately.

Saepius Exertus,
Semper Fidelis,
Frater Infinitas.
March 20th, 2013"
Regan Copple of Los Angeles, CA

"I was Serving with the British forces when i heard this sad information come over the military network,we were down on the Kuwait Iraq Boarder about to breech in to Iraq. you will never be forgotten soldier ."
Ex British Soldier of United Kingdom

"To the family of:Jay Thomas Aubin
I am so sorry for the loss of your love one. My heart cries out for you in your grief and you have my thoughts and prayers. He died a hero defending freedom. May you have the peace and understanding that only comes from God. Prayerfully we will all meet in Heaven one day where we will rest in the arms of Jesus. If you need prayer or need someone to talk to, please call or write my pastor: Rev. John Pearrell 11677 Brown Bridge Rd., Covington, GA 30016. (770)787-1015.
Your friend in Jesus Christ, Polly Ballew Covington,Ga""

"To the family and friends of Jay Aubin.:
Corporal Jay Aubin and I served together in VMA-121(Green Knights) from when I was there from late 1986 to when I left the Marines in 1988 after our WestPac-1987 on the USS Ranger.
I lost touch with most of the people I served with after I left the Corps, (no Facebook or e-mail back then), and didn’t find out about his death until recently. I’m very sorry for the loss of a great Marine, Father, and friend.
I remember him well as a Plane Captain and myself as an Avionics tech. Even though we never hung out together, Jay always had an ear-to-ear grin on his face that made you smile no matter what your mood was. He always had a smile, and was always helping someone. He had a great sense of humor and will always be missed.
Stephen Salaki (formely L/cpl USMC) of Hopedale, Massachussetts

"Sweet Pea
Just stopping by to say hello and let you know you are not forgotten. Many of your Marines who you inspired have gone on to become great sons and daughters of this nation. We are forever, gratefully in your debt."
MGySgt Wayne Cowan (ret) of Pentagon, Washington, DC

"Remembering you on this day...a day for heroes like you. Gone too soon, never forgotten. Semper Fi!"
Dan Guzman USMC (ret) of Midland, Texas

"You are not forgotten!!"
Donald Belgarde of Fernley Nevada

"Remembering you on this Memorial Day Jay. You are a great Marine. Semper Fi my brother!"
Ray of Picayune, MS

"Jay and I where together 1985-1989 VMA-121 He always had a smile,and was always helping someone. He had a great sense of humour and will always be missed. I worked in Airframes and he on the line. The world has lost not only a good Marine but a good man I gather God needed a well rounded well respected Marine to guard the gates of Heaven Semper Fi. Nov,11,2011 The crazy Canuck from the great White North"
Cpl Jeff Seymour USMC Ret of Kamloops, British Columbia Canada

"Jay and I served together in TBS - 1st Platoon. Jay always stood out among us; mature, loving family man. When Jay smiles, the rest of the world smiles too. God Bless you and your family Jay. Semper."
Jonathan Bradley of West Palm Beach, FL

"First and foremost, Jay was one of the finest people I have met. I was a Sgt. with VMA (AW) 242, (82-90) working Flight Line when Jay joined the squadron. Having both him and Rhonda in the same shop was a blessing. It is hard to remember him when he did not have a smile on his face. He will be missed. Semper Fi Jay"
David Freeman of Denver, CO

"Semper Fi"
Gunny Rossow of Bangkok, Thailand

"You are not forgotten.

semper fi"
S.T. of Maine

"Jay was a good man. My condolences to his family."
Jim Hengen of Eagan, mn

"I had the privilege of serving with Jay when he was a CPL back in 88-90. We were at El Toro with VMA(AW)242 working on A-6's. You are missed my Brother! Semper Fi"
Roger "Chico" De Coster of Las Vegas, NV/USA

"My son just completed WTI in Yuma. Voted top pilot by his peers, he was awarded the Maj. "Sweet Pea" Aubin Award. I had to read more about this special man. We are humbled and honored. I will keep his memory and family in my prayers forever. Semper Fi"
suzi bird of simi valley, ca

"Many years have passed since this tragedy, but the memories of the man that I knew as 1stLt Aubin will remain close to my heart. I was in the room when the Marine needed to get his record book to notify his next of kin. I froze when I heard his name and when I learned that he was one of the first casualties. He was my first OIC when I first came aboard at HMT 204. He was an amazing person and an amazing Marine. Semper Fi!"
Cpl Diana Matienzo (96-01; reactivated in 03) of Kansas City Kansas

"Major (then Captain) Aubin was one of my air officers in 1st Bn, 5th Marines. Great guy, willing to teach and had lots of time for us grunts. Thanks for everything sir, Semper Fi."
Brian Siebert of Townsville, QLD, Australia

"Sweet Pea,
Rest easy and semper Fi, never forgotten my friend.

USMC 81-85"
Scott of Maine

"I served with Jay back in 1986 to 1990 when we were both in the Green Kinghts VMA(AW)-121 which was an A-6 squadron based out of MCAS El Toro, in Orange County California. We were also attached to Carrier Air Wing One stationed on board the USS Ranger. He served as enlisted before he went back to college, and became an officer and then a pilot. When I knew him, he was just plain old Corporal Aubin, plane captain for the 121 Flight Line, a much less glamourous job than it sounds. We used to tease him a lot for kissing up to our NCOIC Gunny Lou Ortego, but he was a good guy who taught me a lot about being a plane captain, dealing with sea sickness by eating crackers, and staying safe on the aircraft carrier flight deck during flight operations. We both used to talk about going back to college after we finished our respective terms of enlistment, and Jay indicated to me even then that he wanted to come back as an officer, and become a pilot. He was a really nice guy who had a hidden talent for making up the funniest little ditties about people in the squadron, plus he pulled quite a few pranks on people in the shop. I know I can honestly say that all of the guys in 121 Flight Line miss you Sweet Pea. (one of Jay's many nicknames besides Jay-bird, and Knaubin.)"
Regan Copple of Los Angeles, CA

"To Jay's family:

I was Jay's first civilian flight instructor. After years of teaching people how to fly, Jay has been described by me many times as being my best student. Period. I have shared this with many people both before and after his accident. More importantly though, I found Jay to be an amiable person. I considered him a friend, although I really didn't spend a great deal of time with him. It is a testament to the wonderful individual he was that I leave this post years after making his aquaintance. I am sorry for your loss, and just wanted you to know that he will continue to be in my thoughts."
Greg Murphy of South Portland, ME

"We're proud of you Marine!! I served with L/cpl/Cpl Aubin also between '85 and '89 in VMA(AW)-121 & 242. In those days we enlisted Marines were bounced back and forth between those 2 units like ping pong balls! Let's all remember Freedom isn't Free."
Tim Toborg of Cosmos, MN

"”Honor and Remember” - “Project Compassion” We love our Soldiers! We love our country and we cannot express enough love and compassion to the families of our fallen heroes. War does not discriminate – It breaks our hearts to see the faces of the fallen. We want to give this gift to the hero’s Mother, Father and/or spouse. We are a 501c3 nonprofit organization! Almost 2,100 portraits have been completed and shipped to the parents and or spouse - at no cost as this is a gift from one American to another!
This is a gift! We have wonderful sponsors who help with the costs, and want you know that everyone here at Project Compassion does and will always CARE.
Contact us directly at Projectcompassion@manti.com or go to www.heropaintings.com . If you have already had a portrait completed, we pray that you are enjoying the portrait and God Bless You.
Sincerely and Respectfully,
Project Compassion of Manti, Utah USA

"I was taking some pictures in Ponit Loma and came across Jay's gravesite. I didn't realize it until I got home, but it was the day of his death. Thank you so much for all that you have done for our country. I am eternally greatful."
Taylor of San Diego, Ca

"Hi Daddy,

Not a day goes by without me thinking of you. I will love you and miss you forever. You will always be my dad. I love you"
Alicia Aubin of Austin, Texas

"I was honored to serve with Jay when he and Rhonda were Cpl's in VMA(AW) 242 in El Toro. He is gone but never forgotten. His memory lives on in the lives of those he touched during his altogether brief time among us.

Semper Fi my brother. Rest well."
David Hundert of Lancaster, PA

"I knew Jay when he was Corporal Aubin during my 1st WestPac with VMA(AW)-242. It seems like a lifetime ago but going through my cruise-book and the memories come back like it happened yesterday. Jay I was honored to meet you."
Jonard (Jose) Legaspi of Seattle, WA/USA

"Sweet Pea;
You were my first OIC when I was a "wet behind the ears" Marine, fresh out of school. I owe you all the thanks in the world, because you made my transition to Oki, easy and fun. Thank you for everything you did. Your memory will never be forgotten. Semper Fi!"
Tim 'Timmy" Hanson of Fredericksburg, Virginia

"To the family of Jay:
Please know that he is not forgotten and his sacrifice is and will always be honored. God bless this holiday season. I hope to be half the man he was. He made more of an impression on me during our time in Oki than anyone, and that matters to me. I still remember one day when we were phasing a bunch of birds to get on the boat. He walked out of his office in CC and saw us. He turned around and called Rhonda to say he was gonna be late then came out to help. He is the only office I saw in 9 yrs do that. The impression that he made on me and the rest of us by that single action can never be explained. We miss you and still love u."
Derek Hartzell (Best of the best, HMM-265) of Tuscaloosa, Alabama

"Sweet Pea,
Saw you in Arizona before you left. You reminded me of one of my father's frat buddies. You were one of my favorite pilots. We talked about the coming war during one of the missions out in the desert, and I was still on the fence; you were both wiser and braver than I was.

Semper Fi, sir. Thank you for your example. You are not forgotten."
Brad Hankinson, Sgt/USMC of Denver, CO

"Sweatpea, Jay, Eternal Friend
There are special people one meets in life that leave an everlasting impact and leave a rare gift of genuine friendship. Knowing you as I did, the most unfortunate people were those that never met you. No matter what we say, what we write, the impact you made on all of us cannot be imagined. I, we miss you but will never forget you. Veteran's Day is a day to honor those who've served. My friend as you look down from high above, guard those in harm’s way; protect our young men and women who sacrifice daily. I know you will; you always have. That's why we miss you so much. Rest with our brothers and sisters my friend. Semper Fi"
Wayne M. Cowan MGySgt USMC (Ret) of Frederiskcburg, Virginia

"This was a man that knew no boundries. If help was needed, he was there to do it. We love and miss you Sweat Pea I will hold you close to my heart for all time."
SSgt Rob "Tater" Heverly of Newport News, VA

"With all the love, respect and concern for Jay, as well as friends and family left behind shown here on this page, our words still can not properly express the grace with which Jay lived his life. Even when we were in school, and most of us didn't know better, he had a kindness, a respect for others that many people never learn. Jay possessed a fierce sense of humor, sharp wit, a sincerity. His parents got so much right! He will truly never be forgotten. May God Bless his family."
Kym Brack Albertelli '84 of Skowhegan Area High School

"Jay you will never be forgotten, your name altho its been years, is still spoken, recently by a man, who spoke of you with such pride and admiration, his name is Robert Bean, from Clinton Maine, a Viet Nam veteran himself. He knew you in your younger years and spoke of your vw car mud-racing days, good days he said, so no matter how much time goes by, you are not forgotten. I thank you for your sacifice, to keep my world safe and my children's world safe."
A. Lane of N. Berwick, Me.

"To the family of Maj Jay Aubin:

I first met LCpl Aubin when he was my sponsor/mentor/protector on the flight deck of the USS Ranger with VMA(AW)-121. He taught me how to stay alive up there.....after all these years, what can I say but: "Semper Fi, Major!" We were friends and you made one hell of an impact on the people around you.

To Jay's family, he'll never be forgotten by his fellow Marines!"
(fmr) Sgt Emery of Marysville,WA

"Jay, You will not be forgotten. I miss the all Maine crew. Once a Dragon always a Dragon."
Tim Smith

You will are not forgotten. Thinking of you on this Memorial day..
Semper fi"
scott of sanford maine

"Jay and I were in VMA-121 together I rember that Jay always carried more tiedown chains than any of the other line Marine's and somehow always had room for one more if it meant helping another Marine. Jay got out and I did't see him again untill we ran into each other at the Airshow at Cherry Point - I couldn't miss his smile even though he was on the other side of the hangar. I felt sick when I heard of Jay's death - he was a Marines Marine and a great human being - He will be missed.

Semper Fi Jay"
CWO2 (ret) Sean Nicholson of Yuma, AZ

"Never met you, never met your family.

Just happened to come across your gravesite while overlooking Pt Loma. Don't know why I copied your name. Maybe because of our close age, adherance to Honor, or just curious.

I thank you for what you stood for.

To Major Aubin's family and friends. May God continue to provide strength.

K9 Officer Paul Werth, US Customs and Border Protection (USCG Retired E-8) of Blaine, WA.

"You will not be forgotten. SEMPER FI"
Scott of Sanford maine

"I knew Jay for a long time. We went to Memphis together in the summer of 85. Once we got done with school, we both got orders to VMA-121 at MCAS El Toro. When we got to MCAS El Toro in Oct 85, that first Saturday was Military appreciation night at Disneyland. Jay and I and a couple other Marines piled in my car and off we went. It was the best start to our adventure in California and the Marines. When we checked into VMA-121, Jay went to Flight Line and I went to Power Plants. That was when we found out that we were in a Marine Squardon stationed on the USS Ranger. Jay and I traveled all over the place for 4 years with that squadron. He got out after our 6 month deployment in 89. I lost touch with Jay after he got out. I stayed in the Marines for 12 years and got out in 97. I spent 5 years at MCAS El Toro and 7 years at MCAS Yuma. I never knew that Jay had gone to college and came back into the Marines as an officer. I was in Tucson visiting my family when I read in the paper about Jay. I really blew me away to know that he was gone. Let alone that he was stationed at Yuma and I never saw him around the base. He was a dear friend and my thoughts are with his family. Take Care, God Bless and Semper Fi!!"
Kenneth McDaniel of Phoenix, Arizona

""If you havent found something worth dying for, you havent lived" -Martin Luther King

Major. Jay Thomas Aubin I salute you and your comrades. Soldier on trooper. You will not be forgotten and your comrades will not not be left behind."
Aaron of ISRAEL

"I was Jay and Rhonda's SNCOIC at VMA-242 and it was a pleasure working with both of them. Both outstanding NCO's. After I transferred I had heard that they were married and left our Corps. Years later I was surprised to see a smiling Capt Aubin at a softball game in Yuma. He had spotted an older MSgt playing with the boys and had quite a laugh! It was so good to see an old friend and was so good to know he was back. All I know is that when Jay was around, all around him was better. The Marine Corps, his family, and his friends lost a truly exceptional person that day. He is missed. Semper Fi Sir!"
MSgt Ken Grzyb (Ret.) of Yuma, Az

"It's been quite a long time since we lost you Sweet Pea. I hope that folks still read this. The Corps and the world isn't as bright without you here.
Semper Fi,

Tully Bryant
Sergeant Major, MARINES (Retired)"
Tully Bryant of Arlington, Texas/USA

I am only 13 but i hear what the others are saying. You are missed and always well be missed by your friends and family.I had to do a report on somone who died in the iraqi war/operation iraqi freedom. And I read your profile and dicided to do my report on you because you did somthing that is and always well be honored. It is a sad story and I give sorrows to you friends and family that lost you. I somday wand to enlist in the military. Still diciding what one but i am leaning toward the air force or the marines."
Jacob Molitor of Nicollet/Mankato MN

"i bought a memorial bracelet because i felt that i wanted to honor our fallen Maine soldiers. i did not know anyone who had died from Maine so i just picked someone close to my age. i am currently 37 and Maj. Jay Aubin was the closest to my age. i will wear my memorial braclet with pride for the sacrifice he gave for our country and our safety. my husband was also in a helicopter crew in the military so it has a special meaning that i will never forget."
Marcy of Poland, Maine

"Jay ... you are missed by so many. God bless you and your wonderful family"
Dave of Carlsbad, CA

Never forgotten,semper Fi. You are always in my thoughts and your family is always in my prayers.

Semper Fi"
Scott of Sanford Maine

"Just thinking of Jay today. I served with Jay in VMA(AW)-242 for a couple of years. Have reunited with some from that unit and talked about him with them. All I have to do is look down and see the sterling band that I have on my wrist, that bears Jay's name. Thinking today of what I am able to enjoy and what he gave for his country. Always remembering he carried a smile any place he went."
MSgt Sean Palmateer (Retired) of Statham, Ga U.S.A

"I served with Jay in HMM-268. I was a ground maintenance officer (AAMO) and I held the pilots and aircrew in high regard. Jay briefed that first mission and after hearing his brief it was apparent why he was there. Simply put he was one of the best. I didn't know him that well but he impressed me by his humility and calm demeanor.
I pray God's grace on his wife and children."
James E. Rollins III (Trey) of Sewanee, TN

"I think of him from time to time when I think of my time served in Iraq. When I first seen him in Ali AL Salem Air Base it was a great relief to see the Marine Corps bring together the finest people to carry out this mission. It also brought back a distant feeling of comradery I shared with the 1999-2000 265 Dragons. He was my OIC then along with Maj Presto one of his other friends. I shook his hand and like always he had a big smile. We talked briefly about our careers. He never distanced himself from the enlisted like other officers and that made him more than an officer.

My Condolences to the Family."
Sgt Cochise S Diaz 265/364 Vet of San Jose CA

"My thoughts of Jay.... We were in Skowhegan High school band. He could always make you smile no matter what the situation was. I think of him often and am proud to have kown such a postitive person. I thank you JAY for fighting for our country, We love and miss you dearly. Your sacrifice will make this life a better place..... Lot of love.. USA!!!!!"
Cindy of Canaan

"My thoughts of Jay.... We were in Skowhegan High school band. He could always make you smile no matter what the situation was. I think of him often and am proud to have kown such a postitive person. I thank you JAY for fighting for our country, We love and miss you dearly. Your sacrifice will make this life a better place..... Lot of love.. USA!!!!!"
Cindy of Canaan

"I was stationed with Maj Aubin at MAWTS-1 in Yuma, AZ. I was one of his Flight Equipment Marines, and remember him as being a prankster and joker. I spent a 24 hour duty with Maj. Aubin then Capt. Aubin and remember trading many stories throughout the night with him. All of his stories seemed to be about his family. I, then a young NCO recall saying to myself this is a true man, American, father, and husband. I think back on that night occasionally and ask myself, am I a man that other men can look at and say same about me as I had said about maj. Aubin? Maj. Aubin I knew you for a short period of time, and though we were not personal friends I feel that you made a great impact on my life by showing me as a young man, that you can be a brave man but yet still have a kind and gentle heart, and to that I say thank you."
Dave Shaffer of Philadelphia, PA, USA

"This man was my first OIC when I got to 265 in Oki as a young PFC. It was a honor and priveledge to have served with you. You will be truly missed by all those who knew you. God speed and Semper Fidelis. Once a DRAGON always a DRAGON!"
SSgt Timothy Hanson of Quantico, Virginia

"Maj Aubin,
It was a pleasure serving with you. May GOD bless your family.
"Once a Dragon, Always a Dragon""
John Barnes of Munford, TN

"The Real Hero"
Pavel of Czech republic

"This is a time for rememberance and I will always remember sweet Pea. semper Fi"
Scott of Maine

"May 22, 2007
To the family of Jay Thomas Aubin. Jay gave the ultimate sacrifice and will be held in the hearts of Americans forever. I cannot and will not let our fallen heroes be forgotten. My deepest sympathy to you. "Some gave all."
Peggy Childers
"Don't Let The Memory Of Them Drift Away"
Peggy Childers of Carson City, NV

"May you always remember him for the hero that he was"
Lorene Meacham of Monument, CO, USA

"I served with Maj Aubin (Capt Aubin before he left Oki.) in Okinawa while we were both attached to HMM-265. He was always an officer that I and other enlisted Marines could talk too. I'll never forget when he came to the squadron on his off day to wish me and several other Marines good luck before we went on a meritorious promotion board. A few days before he left 265 to go to his new duty station in CA he pulled me to the side and wished me luck before I put in my MECEP (Meritorius Enlisted Commissioning Program) package to become an officer. We found out that he had passed when we were in Korea. We held a memorial service in his honor and it only made me realize how much he would truly be missed when I saw my MGySgt, one of the hardest SOB's I've ever known, shed tears. Major Aubin, you'll always be missed, and never forgotten.

Sgt Demetrius E. Martin
USMC Veteran"
Demetrius E. Martin of Cincinnati, Ohio

"I love you and miss you!
Love your god daughter."
Bridget Willette of Colorado Springs, CO

"Uncle Jay I am so proud of the work that you have done. The family misses you dearly. We think about you everyday. You will always be in our hearts. We love you!"
Thomas J. Aubin (nephew), Ashley and Camden of Skowhegan, ME

"In loving memory and to the best young Marine Officer who served in MAG 36 during my tour as Commanding Officer (1999-2001).

Jay or Sweat Pea, as we knew him, was a special person. A proud husband, father, and Marine...in that order.

We all miss him, but was honored to know him and serve with him."
BGen (USMC) Thomas. L. Conant of Alexandria, Va.

"Maj. Aubin,
Sir, I would like to say thank you to you and the other men who were on that '46 with you for your service and sacrifice for our Country. And to your family, I wish to extend my deepest sympathy.

Semper Fi Devil Dog!"

"To the family of Jay Thomas Aubin, I honor your sacrifice and I honor Major Aubin's service to our country. To those of you who loved him, please know that there are families in this nation who understand your loss and appreciate all that is being done for our safety, our nation and our way of life.

May God grant you comfort as you remember your loved one."
Kim Shenberger of Chicagoland, Illinois

"Jay, you were always an inspiration to me. You kept my fat out the fire quite a few times, more than you probably should have. That's the sign of a true brother, taking care of his own. Trudging it out in Yuma with you will always be one of the best times of my life. We're all gonna miss you Sweet Pea. Once a DRAGON always a DRAGON!"
Jason Coxwell of Alexandria, Va

"To the family of Jay Thomas Aubin, please accept my heartfelt condolences.

I founded Project LIVE ON, a program to plant daffodils in honor of every U.S. military man and woman who has died in the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Last Fall (2005), I planted thousands of daffodils on my land in honor of and gratitude to Jay Thomas Aubin, and to each fallen service man and woman. Others, too, have planted daffodils in his name. I encourage as many individuals, families, businesses, places of worship, organizations, local and state governments across the country to do the same. Please contact projectliveon@aol.com. Bypassing all political ideologies, not-for-profit Project LIVE ON seeks to remember and honor our fallen U.S. military heroes.

Beautiful daffodils rise up each Spring, and, like the memory and spirit of those who have died, will live ON...and ON. The daffodils then, become a forever reminder of the sacrifice of your beloved, and the thousands of others who gave their all. Blessings to you as you grieve, and heal.Jan. 18, 2006."
Gretchen Forbes of the northcentral mountains of Pennsylvania

"Well I would like to say to say I wish you all the best! Although I didn't know Mr. Aubin I go to school with his daughter Alicia. She has told me much about him, so when I stumbled upon this website something told me I should leave a message. Any person who fights for there country deserves to be honored, but a man who fights for his country and dies deserves to be remembered as a hero and a respectable man. I wish your whole family the best and hope you find not only peace, but happiness. Thank you so much for the sacrifice your family gave! Jay and all his family will always be remembered in my heart."
Shayna Fields of Temecula, CA

"Mrs Aubin,

I served with your husband during Officer's Candidate School in 1993. We were in the same platoon, B3. Jay was always an inspiration to everyone he came in contact with. We had a special relationship due to the fact that we were both prior enlisted.

After OCS, I only saw him again at TBS, but we had a great conversation and we wished each other luck. I found out about Jay while I was on ship in the Persian Gulf waiting to offload in Kuwait. I must say that I privately shed a tear for him and wrote you an email on his military account hoping that you would get it before they closed it.

I think of him a lot! It was like him to make big impressions on people that spent even a little bit of time with him. In OCS, you really get to know a person's character because of the hard times you share. Jay was a spectacular individual and a professional Marine!

I hope that we see this thing through as a nation so that he and the rest of our heroes wouldn't have died in vain.

I will continue to keep Jay and your family in my prayers!

Semper Fi!"
Major Mike Landree of Quantico, VA

"Sweet Pea,
Just wanted to let you know on this Memorial day that I still think of the year I spent with a brother Marine. For all of Jay's family, he was a person that touched the lives of everyone that he came in contact with. THAT IS WHAT A

USMC 81-85

Semper FI, Major Aubin"
Scott of Maine

"My family lost a very special friend in the VietNam war. He was listed as KIA and i while i know i don't need to go any place specifically to think of him, i never had a place to bring flowers to. One day i was watching the news and saw a report of a soldier that had been buried at Fort Rosencrans cemetary, which was near where i lived at the time. I decided on that day that Jay Aubin's grave was the place i had been waiting for. So in his honor and the honor of Seargent Joseph A. Matajov, i lay flowers and thank all the soldiers of the world for my freedom and life in this wonderful place i call home. God Bless you all."
Lisa Forrest of San Diego, CA

"I am honored and blessed to have been given the priviledge of serving and flying with Maj. Aubin. This man was a Marine's Marine, always looking out for those he served with, never forgetting his time in the enlisted ranks. The Dragons were deployed in Korea when we recieved the word, the entire command was devistated, that is how much Sweet Pea meant to the squadron. During our memorial service there was not a dry eye amongst the hard charging Marines. The command has since established a quarterly award to honor Sweet Pea and dedicated the hangar in Okinawa in his name. This Marine will never be forgotten by those fortunate enough to have served with him before he was called home by the Lord. I cherish my flights and motorcycle rides with this unbelievable Marine, father, and giving spirit. Those that didn't have the priviledge of meeting him, he loved you as well and would have helped you if you needed it. I challenge anyone to find a picture of him without a smile on his face. This Marine is the Chesty Puller of my lifetime. Thank you Maj. Aubin for the time that you shared with me.
Semper Fi HMM-265 Dragons "Best of the Best""
MSgt Timothy Rohman USMC of Fredericksburg, Va.

"Maj Aubin was one of the only Dragons who always took the extra step in making sure I was on the right foot during my first months at the squadron. A great officer who always looked after the younger Marines. Semper Dragonus"
SSgt Yannutz of Virginia Beach, VA

"Maj. Aubin was one of the few officer that I have looked up to. A person who understood Marines and set a clear example of how to be great altruistic human being. Ther are no words on how to express his lose, in this world. I can only hope that I may even come close to understand the good nature of this man. Once a Dragon, always a Dragon."
Juan G. Gutierrez AKA Buckey of Stony Brook Univercity, NY/USA

"The best Marine Corps officer that I ever served with. The only one that had my back when nobody else did. ONCE A DRAGON ALWAYS A DRAGON Semper Fidelis"
rob winkler of rochester ny

"Jay we all miss you. We know you were doing what you believed in and we too believe. Every time I see a helo I can't help but think of you. You were an awesome marine, husband, father and friend. We are so proud of you. Rhonda, Nathan and Alicia are well. There is a hole in our hearts that can never be filled. WE love and miss you this New Year."
Candice Fowler (sister in law) of Etiwanda, CA

"Aloha. We were stationed at MCAS Yuma during the time that this tragic loss occured. My husband was also serving in Iraq , but God Blessed us with his eventual homecoming. Please know that our hearts go out to Major Aubin's friends and more so, family. I once asked my husband why he decided to become a Marine. His response was that he loved freedom so much that he would sacrifice all so that his family could continue to live freely. Most give little, some give all...and we Thank You, Major Aubin, for giving your all. Aloha A Hui Hou Malama Pono."
The Campbell Ohana--Terry, Keala, Calista, and Kawena of Kailua, Hawaii, United States of America

"I want to start by saying I am sorry. I should have spent more time descovering who these soldiers were before my husband joined them all in heaven, and this should have been posted before now. My husband, Spc Justin W. Linden was KIA in Iraq on June 4, 2004. I have made a decision to take the time to personally get to know who all these soldiers really were. Before I even began researching though, I can already say each and every one of them are heroes with wings! To the family of Jay, I hope you are all doing okay. I understand your pain and I will pray for you all. These men were all strong, brave, courageous, wonderful people. I promise to always remember that about your loved one, and every other soldier who died made the ultimate sacrifice for the sake of freedom!"
Sarah Linden of Portland, OR USA

"RIP Marine"
Petty Officer Cawthon of RTC Great Lakes, IL

""Hi....I just felt the need to express my sincere condolences. My brother passed away on May 3rd and I completely understand the pain you are going thru. It is a very hard time but we can be so proud of them and what they stood for. Semper Fi!!
My email is
bwalady@yahoo.com if anyone would like to just talk or whatever.
"God Bless to everyone in your family.""
Kelley_sister of Gunnery Sergeant Ronald E. Baum of Altoona Pa.

"Your son sounds like one of the nicest people I've heard of. He must of been a really hard worker to be a Marine. He will never be forgotton. I am in Jr. High and writing this letter for Social Studies. I enjoyed reading and learning about your wonderful son.I wrote this poem about him.
Aspiring Yuma was his home Thoughtful
Highly deserving
Maxium heart
Arizona inhabiter
Sweet pea
Alicia, his daughter
Never forgotten"
7th Grade Student of Barker Middle School

"For Jay a brave soldier.Bless you and your family.God called you home"
Susan Kelly of Northern Ireland

"Jay, we knew you as "Sweet Pea" and rarely has a callsign been more fitting. You were truly one of the finest men I've ever known and your service and sacrifice to this great country will never be forgotten by those who loved you. May God go with Rhonda, Alicia and Nate. Your memory will live forever with those who knew and were touched by you. Semper Fi Marine"
Chris of Poland, Ohio

"To the Family of Maj. Aubin,

It is with a heavy heart that I write these words to you and other family members of Marines who have fallen. I come from a long family line of Marines; I too am a Marine Corps veteran. His service to his Country and his Corps will live forever in the minds of his fellow Marines all over this country.

While I never personally met this Marine, every Marine is my brother and it is with love and respect to his family that I say to them the words of retired GySgt Ermey, "The Marine Corps lives forever, and that means you live forever."

God Bless and Semper Fidelis"
Rob of Iowa

"In loving Memory..Its been a year..

At the rising of the sun and at its going down, We remember them.
At the blowing of the wind and in the chill of Winter, We remember them.
At the opening of buds and in the rebirth of Spring, We remember them.
At the blueness of the skies and in the warmth of Summer, We remember them.
At the rustling of leaves and the beauty of Autumn, We remember them.

As long as we live, they too will live;
for they are now a part of us, as we remember them.
Rest in Peace Dear Marine!!SEMPER FI!!! We will NEVER FORGET!"
The Grogan Family of Lakeland, TN

"We Will NEVER FORGET !" As the first anniversary of the death of your loved one arrives;
Please KNOW so many people share your sadness, and we are remembering all your family and loved ones in your loss and your deep grief. Your HERO, JAY, will be remembered by name. Our thoughts and prayers are with you. God Bless you. Pat & Sandi Breckenridge from Montana "

"It has been a year now since Major Aubin lost his life. I'd like his family and friends to know that he has not been forgotten and his service to this country is very much appreciated. I know this day will be so hard for you. May God comfort you and ease your pain."
Kelli of USA

"Major Aubin, goodbye soldier and thank you. You are my hero."
Bill of Houston, Texas

"Thank you Maj. Jay. My dad is proud to have served with you. Once a Dragon, always a Dragon."
Glenn Yri of Okinawa

"Jay your memory will never be gone. Once a Dragon always a Dragon."
SSgt Derek Hartzell of Quantico, Va

"Dear Family and Friends; I am truly sorry for your loss. After reading the messages below from people who knew your son, husband or daddy easy to see how much he loved his Country and flying in the big blue sky – he’s still watching over you right now. For bringing such a fine young man up and in to this world who has allowed me to feel safe here my own home in the USA, I would like to say THANK YOU!"
Kittie Burleson of Oklahoma City, OK, USA 02--2004

"May you find comfort in knowing how many people share your sadness. HE is a TRUE HERO! Our thoughts and prayers are with you. God Bless YOU ALL! We Will NEVER FORGET! SEMPER FI!"
The Grogan Family (USMC) of Lakeland, TN

"Thank you Jay Aubin, you will not be forgotten. Your bravery goes beyond words. I want to express my deepest gratitude for your sacrifice. To the family and friends, my prayers and deep condolences in your loss. May God strengthen you from knowing that fellow Americans and people around the world care about you and grieve with you in your loss. God bless you all. A very appreciative fellow American,"
Leo Titus of Grayslake, Illinios

"I never knew Jay, nor do I know any of his family or friends, but I am filled with hope in hearing his story. A story of amazing bravery. I have hope for our wonderful country and for peace in the world. Because of Jay and others like him, I know that peace is in or future. Jay, you make be proud to call myself an American. I hope that Jay's friends and family can take some strength in the fact that Jay's sacrifice is making the world a better place. I am so thankful for people like him. Thank you Jay."
Kelly Hanson of Antrim, NH

"Jay you will never know how much we love and miss you. I remember all the times at memmre` house when you would play with all the younger cousins. you were always fun to be around. We all look up to you still even though you are gone. we love you Jay and will miss you very much!!!!"
Tami Varney ( cousin to Jay) of Plymouth, Maine

"My thoughts & prayers go out to all the Military men and women who are at war and especially those who have lost their lives. May God bless you forever. Thank you for everything, you are my hero! Rest in peace"
Amanda K Casas of San Diego, Tx

"To the Family of Jay T. Aubin. I will like to say my heart goes out to you all. My husband is a Black Hawk pilot who is serving in Afghanistan. We both grew up in Maine and are from separate towns, hubby from Bath, I from Topsham. Hearing on the news a helicopter went down made my heart ache. Knowing that a soldier/pilot from Maine paid the ultimate sacrifice made my heart weep. Taking someone from our home state brought it to close to home. My father said they did wonderful tributes to Jay. Which helped me with the connection to home and to Jay even though I didn't know him personally. I didn't know him but I still weeped for a man who was from my home state and was my age when he perished. Thank you Jay for giving of yourself and paying the ultimate sacrifice to keep my children safe. I hope you watch over my husband and keep him safe. He needs an angel from home..because he is so far away from home. ~May you soar forever into our hearts~"
Stacy Stegemoller and kids of Ft. Drum, New York

"Hey Don S., I'm sorry I'll never have the chance to know Jay as you do. You have always spoken so highly of him, not only as a Marine but as a loving and wonderful human being. I know your heart aches and you miss him deeply. My Love to you and yours and also to Rhonda and her kids. XXOO"
Robin Kohler of Iowa, USA

"Jay, you are always in our hearts and souls. You are more than just my brother-in-law, you are my best friend!
Rhonda, Alica, Nathan are in good hands and miss you more than words can describe.
Don Smith (brother-in-law) of San Diego, CA

"I wrestled with Jay in high school for 2 years. He was a dynamic leader even back then. He had a way of making the underclassmen feel at ease. You rarely saw Jay without a great big smile on his face. The Marines, Maine, and the USA lost a great man on March 20. God Bless you Jay! Thank you for your service to this great country."
Ron Dexter of Skowhegan, Maine

"Thank you for sharing some of your memories of Jay and his photograph with the media. It's important to know those who have sacrificed so much for this country. My heart goes out to you. He will not be forgotten. May God and time help to ease your pain."
Kellie of Montana

"""I would like to donate a canvas portrait to the family of Major Aubin. Our portraits have been well recieved. I have been donating these portraits to Operations Iraqi Freedom and Enduring Freedom because they last forever and no-one will be forgotten. You can see what our donation portraits look like at http://lionheartcreations.net/honorfallen.htm I have wrote a poem called Fallen and we put this on the canvas portrait along with name rank and branch of service. We will ship the portrait right to your home. This cost you nothing. This is our way to serve and honor our fallen. Please let us serve you. You can email us to make arrangements for your portrait and this can all be done over the internet or US mail. Making the portraits only takes a day or so. Our email address is on our website or you can email carlosshelter@aol.com Thank you and God bless"""
Carlos Kathy & Ashley Jones of Middletown Ohio

"Our prayers are with your family during this difficult time. Thank you brave soldier, your courage and sacrifice will nerver be forgotten."
Ken and Maritza Holley of Pembroke Pines, Florida

"Love and Prayers to the Family"
Nina of Bangor, Maine

"To a Hero:

Thank you so much...God Bless your family and friends!"
sarah of forestport newyork

"To the family and friends of Maj. Jay Aubin:
May God's grace be with you during your time of grief. Please know that our thoughts and prayers are with you and we feel your loss and share in your sorrow. Bless Jay for the sacrifice he has made to make a better life for the rest of us."
The Ford Family of Wells, Nevada

"To the family and friends of Maj. Jay Aubin:
I am saddened by the loss of your loved one. He will always be remembered as a hero for fighting for freedom. I hope that this website will be a source of comfort and encouragement for you during this difficult time, and in the future as you recall the memories of Jay, who continues to live on in your heart."
Tim Rivera, of Powder Springs, Georgia

"Reading the article of Jay Aubin filled my eyes with tears at the loss of such a fine sounding man. I will remember him and all of the others each day as I count my blessings for being an American."
Terri Curtis of Green Forest, Arkansas

"Jay will always be a hero to America and to his wife and children. He was an amazing man and will be missed dearly!"
The Ratledge Family of Yuma, Arizona

"Thank you Marine. RIP"
J and T Taylor of NC

"Thank you for allowing your hero to protect our freedoms!"
Holly of Charlottesville, VA

"Thank you for your sacrifice"
Ginger Smith & Family of Hillsboro, In

Honor them by remembering... Freedom - is their gift to us But his soul goes marching on