A Marine based at Camp Lejeune has died during combat operations in Afghanistan nearly two weeks before he was due to come home.
The Pentagon said that 29-year-old Staff Sergeant Joseph D'Augustine of Waldwick, N.J., died Tuesday. The military says his unit was conducting combat operations in Helmand province in southern Afghanistan.
D'Augustine was and explosive ordinance disposal technician, assigned to the 8th Engineer Support Battalion of the 2nd Marine Logistics Group, part of the Second Marine Expeditionary Force at Camp Lejeune.
A sister, Michele Kulesa of Mahwah, tells The Record newspaper her brother was due to come home in 15 days to attend the May wedding of another sister.
The Marine Corps says D'Augustine was promoted posthumously to the rank of staff sergeant.
D'Augustine deployed twice to Iraq, in 2004 and 2008 and then to Afghanistan last year. He received the Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal, the Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal and the Combat Action Ribbon.