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Fallen Mesa soldier honored in President Obama’s weekly address

A late military serviceman from Mesa, Arizona, was honored with a few words by Barack Obama in the president’s latest weekly address.

Spc. Wyatt J. Martin was only 22 when he died Dec. 12, 2014, in Parwan Province, Afghanistan, of wounds suffered when he was in a vehicle that was attacked with an improvised explosive device. Martin was one of two servicemen in the vehicle who died in the attack.

Obama shared the stories of some of the “more than 2,200 American patriots who gave their lives in Afghanistan” in his Memorial Day-themed weekly address, which was released Saturday, and Martin was the first late soldier mentioned.

“Growing up in Arizona, Wyatt Martin loved the outdoors,” Obama said in the address. “To him, a great day was a day spent fishing. After high school, he enlisted in the Army because he believed that the blessings he enjoyed as an American came with an obligation to give back to his country.”

Obama said Martin and Sgt. 1st Class Ramon S. Morris of New York were the final two Americans to die in the combat mission in Afghanistan.

“As a nation, we have to remain worthy of their sacrifice — forever committed to the country they loved and the freedom they fought for and died for,” Obama concluded.

Wyatt and his family were also honored locally in a Gilbert ceremony Friday. Rep. Matt Salmon presented a special flag to Martin’s family and said it had been flown over the U.S. Capitol in the fallen soldier’s honor.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.