Rylee McCollum (Marine Who Died in Kabul) Biography, Wiki
Rylee McCollum was identified as one of the 13 U.S. Marines and service members who were killed in Kabul, Afghanistan, in an airport attack on August 26, 2021. McCollum, who was expected to become a father in three weeks, was remembered as “the definition of courage.”
Rylee McCollum Agef
His age is not confirmed so far.
Rylee McCollum Family, Siblings
Chi McCollum, his sister, wrote on Facebook, “Rylee James. My heart is completely shattered. I love you so much. You are my hero and you were going to be the best dad. I love you, I love you, I love you… Semper Fi.”
On August 19, she wrote, “I’m thankful everyday you are my brother. Stay safe, we love you. Can’t wait for your return and to meet my niece or nephew. Love you Brotato 💗🇺🇸🦅⚓️🌎” He was from Bondurant, Wyoming.
“We are deeply saddened by the loss of this brave Marine,” Regi Stone wrote on Facebook.
“When it comes to the definition of courage, Rylee Mccollum is it. We were fortunate to have him in our home in Wyoming many times as he and Eli were getting ready to enlist together. They kept each other out of trouble, which wasn’t easy, because they were both so ready to serve their country. One evening as we were all having dinner, Kim tried giving her best motherly advice and suggested that they let someone else go in first if the time ever came. Without hesitating, they both said, “if anything ever happens to us, just know, we were doing what we loved. We’re heartbroken but proud to have known this brave hero. Please pray for his family, his wife and new baby that will be born soon. And, let’s keep all his Marine brothers in our prayer. Semper Fi.”
The Casper Star-Tribune reported that Rylee McCollum was on his first deployment for the evacuation and was manning a checkpoint at the airport when he died.
His older sister, Roice McCollum, told the newspaper that he was expecting a baby in three weeks.
Rylee McCollum Career
“He wanted to be a Marine his whole life and carried around his rifle in his diapers and cowboy boots,” McCollum’s sister said. “He was determined to be in infantry… Rylee wanted to be a history teacher and a wrestling coach when he finished serving his country. He’s a tough, kind, loving kid who made an impact on everyone he met. His joke and wit brought so much joy.”
She added: “Rylee will always be a hero not just for the ultimate sacrifice he made for our country, but for the way he impacted every life around him for the better. Making us stronger, kinder, teaching us to love deeper.”
Rylee’s sister Chi wrote on Facebook, “My hero, Our hero, an American f***ing hero. I love you.”
Rylee McCollum Education and School
McCollum was a 2019 graduate of Jackson Hole High School.
Wyoming Schools Superintendent Jillian Balow McCollum told the Casper Star-Tribune: “Saying that I am grateful for Rylee’s service to our country does not begin to encapsulate the grief and sadness I feel today as a mother and as an American. My heart and prayers are with Rylee’s family, friends, and the entire Jackson community.
“We will find many ways to honor Rylee for this ultimate and untimely sacrifice in the coming months and years – but for now, my arms are wrapped around Rylee’s loved ones from afar and I pray they find some comfort.”
Statements and Tributes
The Sweetwater County Sheriff’s Office wrote, “On behalf of Sheriff Grossnickle and the dedicated men and women of Sweetwater County Sheriff’s Office, we extend our sincerest heartfelt condolences to the soldiers and civilians murdered by terrorists in Afghanistan yesterday. Our thoughts and prayers are with the victims’ friends and families, and we are especially devastated to learn that among the victims was one of Wyoming’s very own, Rylee McCollum, a Marine from Bondurant, Wyoming. Thank you for your service and sacrifice. May God rest your souls in peace. We will never forget.”
President Biden said in a news conference that the dead service members were “standing guard at the airport…These American service members who gave their lives are… heroes.. engaged in the selfless mission to save the lives of others.”
Biden said, “We will not be deterred by terrorists… we will continue the evacuation.” He said that ISIS-K leadership and facilities will be attacked. More than 100,000 people were “taken to safety in the last 11 days. In the last 12 hours or so, another 7,000 have gotten out,” he said. “These ISIS terrorists will not win. We will rescue the Americans who are there…America will not be intimidated.”
He called those who died “part of the bravest, most capable and selfless military on the face of the earth.. the backbone of America, the spine of America, the best the country has to offer. Jill and I, our hearts ache for all those Afghan families who lost loved ones, including small children, in this vicious attack. We’re outraged.”