Friends and family of Nicole L. Gee say the 23-year-old Navy killed at the airport in Kabul, Afghanistan died last week doing what they loved: helping people.
The Sacramento, Calif., Marine Corps Sgt posted another photo from the airport that week showing her in front of a plane next to a long line of people, captioned “Escorting Evacuees on the bird “.
Gee’s sister, Misty Fuoco Herrera, told CNN that her brother is a proud Marine, incredibly passionate and motivated.
“She was my best friend, my first friend, my motivation and my inspiration, the light of my life. I will miss her terribly, as will her many family and friends, ”she said.
On a GoFundMe page raising funds for family and friends to attend Gee’s funeral, Fuoco said her family was devastated by Gee’s death but her sister was committed to her work.
“She made the ultimate sacrifice. We will be forever changed and forever hurt by her absences, but I know she wouldn’t have done it any other way, she absolutely loved the work she was doing in Afghanistan and was delighted to tell me more about it once. that she was back home. “
Fuoco said Gee was married to Jarod Gee, another Marine.
“They had a bond like I’ve never seen before and I’m so devastated that he lost the love of his life. She was everything to Jarod, the shining sun of his life, ”she wrote.
Fuoco said family has been Gee’s priority and she visits them whenever she can take time off.
“My 2 year old son would often ask FaceTime for his ‘TT Coley’ and it’s hard to see why we can’t call him anymore. “
Gee’s friend Mallory Harrison posted a powerful tribute to Facebook on Friday, calling Gee “my best friend, my person, my sister forever.” My other half “.
“We were boots together, corporals together, then sergeants together. Roommates for over 3 years now, from the MOS school barracks to our house here. We’ve been hip-strapped from the start, ”Harrison wrote. “I can’t really describe the feeling I get when I force myself to come back to reality and think about how I’m never going to see her again. How her last breath was taken doing what she loved – helping people – at HKIA in Afghanistan. Then there was an explosion. And just like that, she left.
Harrison went on to explain that Gee’s car was parked in the parking lot near the store where Harrison works and that she used it while she was fixing her own car.
“I drove her around the parking lot every now and then to make sure it would be okay when she got home,” Harrison wrote. “Her car is still there and she’s gone forever. “
” My best friend. 23 years. Left. I find peace in knowing that she left this world doing what she loved, ”Gee’s friend added in the post. “She was a Marine de Marine. She cared about people. She loved fiercely. She was a light in this dark world. She was my person. “
On Facebook, the town of Roseville described Gee as a “hometown hero”.
In an article, the city said Gee enlisted in the Marines a year after graduating in 2016 from Oakmont High School. Her husband was also an Oakmont graduate, he added.
The Roseville School District posted a message from Oakmont Principal Isabel Govea on the social media site.
“Nicole has been described as a ‘model navy’ who loved her job. While at Oakmont, she played on the softball team and kept in touch with many of her former teachers. His death strikes our school community, our city and our nation at a particularly difficult time.
“Nicole is a heroine from her hometown. His life and service to our country will never be forgotten, ”wrote Govea.