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UPDATE | Remembering the U.S. service members who died in the Kabul attacks

Among the 13 killed were 11 Marines, one sailor and one soldier, according to the three military departments. Here's what we know.

TEMPLE, Texas — The family of 13 U.S. service members are mourning after learning the tragic news that their loved one was killed in the twin bombings at an airport in Kabul.

Among the 13 killed were 11 Marines, one sailor and one soldier, according to the three military departments.

Though the U.S. Defense Department did not formally announce the names of the service members killed in the attack at Kabul airport, their identities are emerging from family, friends and officials.

Below are the seven service members who were identified. Six of their identities remain unknown at this time. 6 News will update this story as we learn their identities.

Nicole L. Gee, 23

Officials identified have Marine Corps Sergeant Nicole L. Gee who just days before her death was one of several Marines seen cradling and comforting Afghan children prior to their evacuation from the country. 

On Aug. 21, Gee posted a photo of herself holding an Afghan child on Instagram. "I love my job," the 23-year-old from Sacramento native wrote.

David Lee Espinoza, 20

Espinoza lived most of his life in Rio Bravo, which is located about 10 miles away from Laredo. He graduated high school from Lyndon B. Johnson in 2019 and joined the military shortly after, according to Rep. Henry Cuellar (D-Texas) who confirmed his death.

Cuellar said Espinoza "embodied the values of America: grit, dedication, service, and valor."

He is survived by his brother, mother, and stepfather.

Gov. Greg Abbott ordered flags to fly at half-staff to honor Espinoza and the other service members who died from the Kabul attacks.

RELATED: Marine killed in Kabul bombings identified as high school graduate from Texas

Ryan Knauss, 23

Knauss was a staff sergeant in the Marine Corps, according to WKRN.

According to our sister station WBIR in Knoxville, he attended Gibbs High School and joined the military after graduation.

His stepmother told the station Knauss loved laughing, helping his wife Alena in her garden and enjoyed working with his hands to build things.

She added that he just finished Psychological Operations training and was hoping to serve in Washington, D.C., WBIR reported.

RELATED: Family: Tennessee Marine among 13 US troops killed in Kabul airport attack

Credit: Knauss Family
Ryan Knauss, 23

Hunter Lopez, 22

Cpl. Lopez was from Riverside County in California. He was the son of two Riverside County Sheriff's Department members, Deputy Alicia Lopez and Cpt. Herman Lopez, according to the Riverside Sheriff's Association.

Lopez graduated from La Quinta High School in 2017 and joined the U.S. Marine Corps on Sept. 5, 2017. He was assigned to the 22nd Batallion, 1st Marines, the sheriff's department shared.

The Riverside County Sheriff's Department said Lopez served in their department as an Explorer from September 2014 through August 2017. It also said Lopez planned on joining the department after returning from his current deployment in Afghanistan.

Statement from @sheriffbianco : It is with great sadness that I announce the death of Hunter Lopez, the son of two of...

Posted by Riverside County Sheriff's Department on Friday, August 27, 2021

Ryan McCollum, 20

Lance Cpl. McCollum was weeks away of becoming a dad, according to our sister station KFMB. The station reported his wife was three weeks away from delivering their baby.

McCollum graduated in 2019 at Wyoming's Jackson Hole High School before joining the Marines shortly after, his sister said on Facebook.

His father told KFMB that McCollum "loved being in the Marines and he was good at being a Marine."

RELATED: Marine killed in Kabul attacks was weeks away from becoming a dad

Credit: Jim McCollum
Rylee McCollum, who was also killed in the attacks, was formally based at Camp Pendleton, according to his father.

Kareem Nikoui

The day before his death, Nikoui sent his family a video of himself giving candy to Afghan children, according to Reuters.

"He was born the same year it started, and ended his life with the end of this war," father Steve Nikoui told Reuters.

Nikoui was from Norco, California, Norco Mayor Kevin Bash said.

Credit: Nikoui Family
Kareem Nikoui who was formally stationed at Camp Pendelton was one of the 13 killed in the attack at the Kabul airport, according to his family.

Jared Schmitz, 20

Lance Cp. Schmitz was from Wentzville, Missouri near the St. Louis area, according to U.S. Sen. Josh Hawley.

According to the Washington Post, Schmitz was stationed in Jordan and on his first deployment when he was sent to Afghanistan.

His father told the news organization he became a Marine in 2019.

Maxton William Soviak 

Soviak is reportedly the only U.S. Navy sailor who was killed in the Kabul bombings. His sister, Marilyn Soviak, posted a tribute on Instagram and said her younger brother was deployed there to serve as a medic.

""Now he is gone and my family will never be the same," she wrote. "There is a large Maxton-sized hole that will never be filled."

Soviak was a native of Berlin Heights, Ohio, according to the Washington Post. He graduated Edison High School in 2017. His school released a statement after learning about his death, describing Soviak as a good student who was very active in sports and school activities.

RELATED: Navy corpsman from northern Ohio among those killed in Kabul attack

Credit: Soviak Family
Navy Medic Max Soviak, a graduate of Edison High School, died in an attack at the airport in Kabul on Aug. 26.

Stay with 6 News as this story develops.


Watch the Biden news conference that took place after he learned about the attacks: