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LINCOLN (CBS) – Fallen Marine Sgt. Nicole Gee’s family accepted honors in her memory at the Lincoln Veterans Day event and 96 additional names, including Gee, were unveiled on the Placer County Veterans Monument site.
The event started at 11: 11 a.m., and like the date 11/11, marks when Germany and the Allies signed a 1918 agreement to end World War I. The fighting stopped on the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month.
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Gee’s aunt and sister spoke with CBS13 after the ceremonies, which ended with a 21-gun salute and taps in honor of fallen service members, like Gee.
The 23-year-old Roseville native was among the 13 U.S. service members killed in the suicide bombing outside the airport in Kabul, Afghanistan.
“My sister was my favorite person in the whole entire universe, I miss her every single day, I think about her all day, every day, all the time. today is not just about her, its about everyone,” said Gee’s sister.
Her family shared photos of Gee’s cousins at her grave, on Veterans Day, in Arlington National Cemetery. Her cousin Patrick Moody is an active-duty U.S. Marine, his wife, Steffani, is a U.S. Air Force Veteran, and Tia Maldonado is a Civilian Systems Accountant for the U.S. Air Force.
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They planned to be together to celebrate Gee’s legacy today and received a surprise visit from John Tien, U.S. Deputy Secretary of Homeland Security. In this meeting, Jules shared that the family was told Gee was the last person buried in Section 60, marking the last military member killed in action from the Afghanistan War.
Closer to home in Lincoln, the special presentation, “meant the world” to Gee’s family.
“We just want people to remember the sacrifice she made,” said Jules, “For us, it’s nice to know that she died doing what she loved, you know?”
Another veteran at the event, who also saw his name unveiled on the veterans site, said Veterans Day is about what it means to serve.
“Me and my brothers and sister are first generation American on [my father’s] side, we have everything to fight for. They made a sacrifice coming here, and we get to keep it alive by fighting for why they came here and what they came here for,” said Joe Swaleh, who served in the Army and was deployed to Afghanistan.
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All future panel unveilings will occur annually, at the Lincoln Community Veterans Day ceremony, until all plaques are sold.
A standing ovation for Sgt. Nicole Gee’s family, who were gifted a replica of the marker that will be added to the Lincoln Veteran’s Memorial. #VeteransDay @CBSSacramento pic.twitter.com/iAvlg2BEvx
— Madisen Keavy (@madisenkeavy) November 11, 2021
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