Family proud of son who gave everything for his fellow Marines - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

Family proud of son who gave everything for his fellow Marines

Posted: Updated:
Will Donnelly and his father Will Donnelly and his father
PICAYUNE, MS (WLOX) -

By Jeff Lawson – bio | email

BILOXI, MS (WLOX) - On Thanksgiving Day, the Donnelly family received the news that every military family fears. They learned their son, Will, had been killed in action in Afghanistan.

Will had spent much of his youth growing up in Picayune. His family no longer lives there, but Jeff Lawson of WLOX News had a chance to speak with Will's father on the phone.

"He was always a humble guy," is how William Donnelly III, described his only son. "He was a good man."

Will's humility is part of what made him such a good Marine. His dad said his only son always wanted to follow in his footsteps and serve our country.

It was early September of this year when his family last saw and talked to Will, on his wedding day. That's the day Will's dad told him something he will always remember.

"I just told him how proud I am of him, how I have always been proud of the man he was," William Donnelly said.

Will was leading his fellow Marines in a fire fight when he died on Thanksgiving Day.

"They became engaged with a large Taliban force," his father said. "We understand the fire fight lasted over two hours. It involved several other squads that came to assist. We also understand it was early in the fire fight when he was hit. He died quickly and did not suffer, which we are very grateful for."

The family knew he was serving in a very dangerous province of Afghanistan, but no family can ever be prepared for the death of their child. Mr. Donnelly told us he thinks his son would want to be remembered as a Marine who gave everything he had for his fellow Marines.

Lt. Donnelly will be laid to rest at Arlington National Cemetery December 14th.

Copyright 2010 WLOX. All rights reserved.

  • Most Popular StoriesMost Popular StoriesMore>>

  • Huge alligator snapping turtle set free

    Huge alligator snapping turtle set free

    Tuesday, April 15 2014 12:27 PM EDT2014-04-15 16:27:58 GMT
    There is good news for an alligator snapping turtle that was rescued from a drainage ditch a week ago. "Snappy," as the rescuers referred to the reptile, has been set free.More >>
    There is good news for an alligator snapping turtle that was rescued from a drainage ditch a week ago. "Snappy," as the rescuers referred to the reptile, has been set free.More >>
  • Fishermen say impacts still linger from BP oil spill

    Fishermen say impacts still linger from BP oil spill

    Thursday, April 17 2014 6:52 PM EDT2014-04-17 22:52:06 GMT
    Against a backdrop of shrimp boats, Vietnamese fishermen held message boards, along with pictures of dead dolphins, turtles and tar balls. Four years later, the impact of the oil spill remains.More >>
    Against a back drop of shrimp boats, Vietnamese fishermen held signs with pictures of dead dolphins and sea turtles this morning. They were at the fishing dock on Biloxi Back Bay to join advocacy groups in a news conference talking about the impacts of the BP oil spill four years later.More >>
  • Affidavit: Diary detailed cop's relationship with teen

    Affidavit: Diary detailed cop's relationship with teen

    Thursday, April 10 2014 6:53 AM EDT2014-04-10 10:53:05 GMT
    A Harrison County affidavit WLOX obtained said a young girl's diary detailed the relationship between former officer Patrick Klis and a 15-year-old girl. WLOX also found online pictures of Klis and a young girl.More >>
    WLOX News has uncovered new details about what led investigators to arrest a Long Beach Police officer for three counts of sexual battery involving a minor. A Harrison County affidavit WLOX obtained said a young girl's diary detailed the relationship between former officer Patrick Klis and a 15-year-old girl. WLOX also found online pictures of Klis and a young girl.More >>
Powered by WorldNow

208 DeBuys Road
Biloxi, MS 39531
(228) 896-1313

FCC Public File
EEO Report
Closed Captioning

All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Worldnow and WLOX. All Rights Reserved.
For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.