California Marine Corps SGT. Nicole Gee, Age 23, who cradled baby at Kabul airport was killed in Afghanistan attack

A week ago, Gee, 23, posted a photo on Instagram that showed her holding a baby at that airport. She added a simple, profound comment: "I love my job." The same photo was posted by the Department of Defense on Aug. 21. Marine Sgt. Nicole Gee celebrated the joy of service just days before she was one of 13 U.S. service members killed in Thursday's suicide bombing attack near Kabul's Hamid Karzai International Airport.

"Her car is parked in our lot. It’s so mundane. Simple. But it’s there," she began the post. "My very 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 barracks at MOS school to our house here. We’ve been attached at the hip from the beginning. Gee, from Sacramento, California, served as a maintenance technician with the 24th Marine Expeditionary Unit from Camp Lejeune in North Carolina. On her Instagram page, she described herself as a "positive mental attitude advocate." The locations listed on her page include California, North Carolina and "somewhere overseas."

"Never would have imagined having my Sergeant promotion meritoriously in Kuwait," she wrote of the promotion in a post shared three weeks ago. A Facebook post by the city of Roseville, California, which calls Gee "a hometown hero," says she graduated in 2016 from the city's Oakmont High School and enlisted in the Marines a year later. It says her husband, Jarod Gee, also is an Oakmont graduate and a Marine. "I can’t quite describe the feeling I get when I force myself to come back to reality & 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’s gone."

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